October 3, 2012 in City

Blaze endangers mission school

Dozens of firefighters fighting strong winds near Omak
Associated Press

OMAK, Wash. – A new wind-driven wildfire is threatening the historic St. Mary’s Mission and school near Omak in north-central Washington, fire officials said.

Ike Cawston of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation said the fire burned across at least 500 acres – or nearly a square mile – of sagebrush and grass since it was reported late Tuesday afternoon.

The fire was burning near state Highway 155.

Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers estimated winds in the area were as strong as 40 miles per hour.

Cawston said more than 75 firefighters from nearby agencies and the Washington state Department of Natural Resources were working to build fire lines and protect structures.

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