Spokane (WA) (AP) — Rain and hail fell Wednesday on the largest wildfire in the state’s history, but it wasn’t enough to extinguish the flames.
The Carlton Complex stands at more than 250,000 acres, or nearly 400 square miles, and is being fought by about 2,500 people. The fire has burned about 150 homes and is blamed for one death after a man died of a heart attack while hauling water and digging a fire line to protect his home. It is 52 percent contained.
The Wednesday storm raised humidity in the area of the Carlton Complex and prevented it from growing much, Erikson said.
However, lightning could spark new fires in the parched region, said fire spokesman Andrew Sandri. He added that all the moisture could lead to flash floods because so much ground vegetation has been lost. The National Weather Service issued a flash-flood watch from Wednesday morning through evening.
Two other major fires are burning in north-central Washington:
- The Chiwaukum Complex near Leavenworth has burned 12,225 acres; is 10 percent contained; and has 1,000 firefighters on scene.
- The Mills Canyon fire remains at 22,571 acres and is 90 percent contained.
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