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Lake Spokane fire 30 percent contained, firefighters say

A 1,000-acre fire still smoldering near Ford, Washington, and Long Lake is 30 percent contained as of Friday morning, a spokesman for the Washington Department of Natural Resources said.

Reports late Thursday that the fire was mostly contained were inaccurate, department spokesman Chuck Turley said.

The department has also not pinpointed an official cause for the fire, Turley said. Residents had said Thursday the blaze was started by burning garbage, but that claim has not been confirmed, Turley said.

Three hundred firefighters are now on-scene battling the fire that started Wednesday and prompted evacuation orders for an area near the intersection of state highways 291 and 231 in southern Stevens County. No mandatory evacuation orders remain in place Friday morning, Turley said, but residents are urged to remain on alert in case soaring temperatures and winds cause some flare-ups.

Turley said crews will likely remain in the area through the weekend, when temperatures are expected to flirt with the 100-degree mark. Three firefighters were treated for heat exhaustion Wednesday, but there were no reported injuries Thursday, Turley said.

GPS mapping provided a estimated size of 1,016 acres for the fire, Turley said. There were no significant growths in the burn line yesterday, he said, when firefighters tried to continue the flames within a burn line dug Wednesday night.