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Stories tagged: wildfires


UPDATED: Tue., Oct. 10, 2017, 9:31 p.m.

Ashes and stinging smoke mark devastation in wine country

Newly homeless residents of California wine country awoke to shattered lives Tuesday, a day after wildfires killed at least 15 people and destroyed more than 2,000 homes and businesses.


UPDATED: Mon., Oct. 9, 2017, 9:14 p.m.

Wine country wildfires torch California homes

Wildfires whipped by powerful winds swept through Northern California early Monday, sending residents on a headlong flight to safety through smoke and flames as homes and businesses burned in wine …


UPDATED: Sun., Oct. 1, 2017, 9:54 p.m.

Cool, damp weather brings relief to U.S. wildfire outlook

Cool, damp weather has brought relief from wildfires in the northwestern U.S., North Idaho and Western Montana, but the fall fire season is getting underway in Southern California, forecasters said …


UPDATED: Mon., Oct. 2, 2017, 6:01 p.m.

Holden Village finds new beginning after test of fire, massive mine cleanup

A wildfire and a massive mine cleanup tested Holden Village, a Lutheran retreat center in the North Cascades. About 4,000 people visit the village each year, which operates in a …


UPDATED: Sat., Sept. 30, 2017, 3:23 p.m.

Montana firefighting costs approach $400M

The cost of fighting wildfires in Montana is approaching $400 million at the tail end of the state’s worst wildfire season in two decades.


UPDATED: Wed., Sept. 27, 2017, 8:41 a.m.

Western senators say fire-funding fix must be ‘on the next bill’ Congress passes

Western senators, led by Idaho Sen. Mike Crapo and Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden, are launching a full-court press to get a fix for the nation’s wildfire funding system through Congress …


Wildfires delay efforts to return fishers to North Cascades

A state-led effort to return the weasel-like fishers to Washington’s North Cascades has been delayed because of the massive wildfires in British Columbia.


UPDATED: Sat., Sept. 16, 2017, 10:22 p.m.

Montana wildfires: Rain and snow help but won’t end season

Rain snow and cold have replaced heat and smoke after about two dry months on Montana’s fire lines, leaving crews scrambling for extra sleeping bags, heaters, coats and long underwear.


UPDATED: Thu., Sept. 14, 2017, 9:39 p.m.

Forest Service spends record $2B battling forest fires

The Forest Service has spent more than $2 billion battling wildfires around the country – a record as wildfires blacken the American West in one of the nation’s worst fire …


Columbia Gorge trails might be closed for months

Authorities say trails affected by an Oregon wildfire in the Columbia River Gorge might be closed for months.


UPDATED: Mon., Sept. 11, 2017, 2:04 p.m.

FEMA approves disaster assistance for 2 more Montana fires

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved disaster assistance for two wildfires on northwestern Montana.


UPDATED: Sun., Sept. 10, 2017, 6:06 p.m.

Bicyclists roll out under clear skies for Spokefest 2017

As if to celebrate Spokane its break from a weeks-long cloud of smoke, thousands converged upon Kendall Yards Sunday morning to breathe in several lungfuls of air along the area’s …


UPDATED: Sun., Sept. 10, 2017, 10:41 a.m.

Federal assistance approved for 3 more Montana wildfires

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved disaster assistance for three large western Montana wildfires.


Spokane sets new record for lack of rainfall

As fires continue to burn through the tinder-dry West, Spokane marks a new milestone Sunday. At 74 days, the city is now experiencing its longest dry spell on record.


UPDATED: Sun., Sept. 10, 2017, 1:05 p.m.

Here’s a list of major fires contributing to Spokane’s smoky air

Dozens of fires are burning in Washington, Idaho, Montana and Oregon. Here’s a breakdown of the major ones.


Rain, cooler weather slows Oregon wildfires

Firefighters are getting some help from the weather in their battle against Oregon’s largest wildfires.


UPDATED: Fri., Sept. 8, 2017, 4:33 p.m.

Winds to push wildfire smoke out of Spokane, but relief may be short-lived

An anticipated cold front is approaching the Inland Northwest with arrival expected on Saturday. But winds will likely weaken Sunday and Monday, which could allow wildfire smoke to rebuild over …


2017 wildfire season in U.S. West far worse than expected

A wet winter and spring in the Western U.S. brought predictions that the 2017 wildfire season would be mild. It was anything but. It ended up one of the worst …


With heat and smoke blanketing region Spokane-area schools crank up the AC

With smoke draping the ground and hot, summer conditions persisting well into September, many schools are cranking up the AC this week.


Fire or volcano? Oregon blaze sparks eruption comparisons

People in Oregon covered their faces with scarves to keep choking ash from wildfires from filling their lungs and wiped the soot from windshields, similar to what long-time residents said …


Take smoky skies seriously, stay indoors

Wet springs and hot, dry summers provide the perfect setting for wildfires, and the Northwest is ablaze with significant fires in Washington, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Canada and Northern California.


UPDATED: Thu., Sept. 7, 2017, 5:20 p.m.

Here’s a list of major fires contributing to Spokane’s smoky air

Dozens of fires are burning in Washington, Idaho and Oregon. Here’s a breakdown of the major ones.


UPDATED: Tue., Sept. 5, 2017, 5:31 p.m.

Ash covers Oregon cities, wildfire smoke chokes West

A growing Oregon wildfire covered parts of Portland’s metropolitan area Tuesday with ash and prompted the shutdown of a lengthy stretch of highway through the state’s scenic Columbia River Gorge.


UPDATED: Tue., Sept. 5, 2017, 8:10 p.m.

Idaho DEQ issues rare statewide air quality alert; bans all open burning

The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality has issued a rare statewide air quality advisory, running through 10 a.m. Thursday, banning all open burning statewide, including campfires.


UPDATED: Tue., Sept. 5, 2017, 4:50 p.m.

Washington’s air quality map crashed this morning because of high traffic. Here’s another option.

So many Washington residents tried to get information on the region’s smoky air Tuesday morning that they crashed the website operated by a state agency.


Wildfires spark air quality warnings throughout Idaho

Air quality throughout Idaho has become unhealthy thanks to wildfire smoke settling in from the Pacific Northwest.


UPDATED: Tue., Sept. 5, 2017, 9:52 a.m.

Highway remains closed as Oregon fire jumps to Washington

A lengthy stretch of highway east of Portland, Oregon, remained closed Tuesday morning as crews battled a growing wildfire that has also caused evacuations and sparked blazes across the Columbia …


UPDATED: Tue., Sept. 5, 2017, 12:10 p.m.

Fires destroy Montana homes, students start school in resort

Students at a western Montana high school will start classes at a nearby luxury resort and ranch property after a wildfire forced evacuation of much of the town of Seeley …


Looking Back: Past opinions provide perspective

Looking Back reviews opinions published in The Spokesman-Review during this week in history. Forced busing, Sept. 9, 1975


UPDATED: Mon., Sept. 4, 2017, 10:07 p.m.

Dozens of forest fires burn in Oregon, casting pall of smoke

Much of Oregon was wrapped in a haze of smoke Monday as dozens of wildfires burned in the state, with one blaze forcing part of an interstate highway to be …