People in many Northwest communities are on edge. A series of wildfires that threatened urban areas in recent days is the culprit.
Those fires are now mostly contained but the region remains very dry with another round of high temperatures expected this week.
Separate wildfires threatened homes near Spokane and Mansfield, Washington. Another blaze came close to seven homes near Grants Pass, Oregon. More than a dozen large fires are still burning on forest and grassland in both states.
The Oregon Department of Forestry’s Rod Nichols said there’s no end in sight.
“We’ve burned about four times the acreage by this point that we would in an average season,” he said. “So, very active.”
Nichols said Oregon has spent more than $20 million fighting fires this summer. In Washington, the cost has exceeded $50 million. That’s in large part due to the enormous Carlton Complex Fire, which destroyed more than 300 homes in central Washington. It’s being called the largest wildfire in the state’s history.