Wildfires in Washington south of Osoyoos reported to be 'aggressive', growing south

'Aggressive' fires by border

Noticeable growth and aggressive fire activity is being reported for the two fires in Washington visible from the B.C. border town of Osoyoos, but so far the increases are heading south.

An update from The Northwest Interagency Coordination Center on Friday morning stated the Spur Fire moved aggressively to the south prompting evacuations and threatening highway 20. Numerous spot fires were located and addressed utilizing engines, dozers, and hand crews.

The Spur Wildfire is estimated at 25 kilometres east of Tonasket, Washington, a town which sits 35 kilometres away from the U.S.-Canadian border. Currently five crews with 162 personnel are responding to the fire while aerial resources were called in to check fire growth in the most active areas and focus on structure protection.

“Crews continued to patrol and address spot fires late into the evening. Today’s activities will focus on structure protection and patrolling for new spot fires,” the update reads.

The fire is estimated at 10,261 acres in size, which is just over 4,150 hectares, nearly double yesterday’s estimate.

The Walker Creek Fire which is slightly more south has also grown, now estimated at 1,091 acres or around 410 hectares in size. Two crews with 194 personnel and 18 engines are attacking this fire.

“Firefighters worked through the night to complete structure assessments and clear brush and debris away from structures. A line has been built across the northern part of the fire but due to weather, spotting is occurring.”

The dry grass in the area will likely facilitate fire spread to the south and closer to Highway 20.

A closure order has been put in place by the Colville National Forest. In many places the fire has been reported to have burned the roadway.

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