One Washington Wildfire Contained

More firefighters headed home Friday to prepare for their next assignment after one of two wildfires burning near Lake Chelan was declared fully contained.


CHELAN, Wash. (AP) -- More firefighters headed home Friday to prepare for their next assignment after one of two wildfires burning near Lake Chelan was declared fully contained.

The Beebe Bridge fire, about 3 miles east of the lake and the Columbia River, had burned across about 4,205 acres before it was contained Thursday night, said Carson Berglund, fire information officer.

A voluntary evacuation order for about 45 homes in the area was lifted Wednesday night. The McNeil Creek Road closure also was canceled, and authorities lifted temporary flight restrictions in and around the airport at this north-central Washington resort town.

Main responsibility for the fire was turned over to Douglas County Fire District 4 on Friday, said Margaret M. Peterson of the National Forest Service.

About 325 firefighters had been assigned to the Beebe Bridge fire, which charred steep, rocky grasslands and at one time threatened 25 homes and 10 outbuildings. No homes burned, but five outbuildings were destroyed.

No serious injuries were reported in that burn or the 7,700-acre Pot Peak fire 15 miles west of the lake in the Twenty-Five Mile Creek drainage, officials said.

The Pot Peak fire was 40 percent contained Friday, according to a news release. About 890 people were assigned to the fire, including some elite ``hot shot'' crews, and the cost of fighting it was approaching $6 million.

No homes were directly threatened by that blaze although there were 16 homes downstream from the head of the fire, said Tom Knappenberger, a U.S. Forest Service spokesman.

The Freezeout fire near the U.S.-Canadian border in the Pasayten Wilderness remained at 150 acres and 17 percent containment. Fire officials from both countries planned to meet to discuss the fire, which poses a potential threat to resorts and timber in the Ross Lake National Recreation Area and north of the border.

Lightning caused all the fires except the Beebe Bridge blaze, which started Saturday when an owl struck a power line.