About 70 firefighters worked for hours in hot weather Friday afternoon to corral a small fire burning west of Spokane in the Palisades Park area.
The fire began around 1 p.m. near a trailhead along Greenwood Road on the southern edge of the park, sending a plume of smoke into the air visible for miles. The fire burned 15 acres, said Guy Gifford, a spokesman for the state Department of Natural Resources.
The fire, which was started by an illegal campfire, spread uphill and jumped Rimrock Drive, Gifford said. Firefighters responded to several spot fires near the main fire. “Most of the fire is down below the cliff,” he said.
Four aircraft dropped water on the fire and helped slow it down. By 3:30 p.m. the fire had slowed enough to send two of the planes away. “The Fire Boss (aircraft) has been very effective,” Gifford said.
Level One evacuations were issued to warn residents in the Grove and Houston roads areas that they should be ready to leave their homes, but that was rescinded after a few hours.
As of 5 p.m. all aircraft had been released. “The fire has been stopped,” Gifford said.
The fire was fully contained by Friday evening with plans to monitor it overnight by a smaller crew of 20 firefighters.
Crews from Spokane County fire districts 10, 9, 8, 5 and 3 responded to the fire as well as firefighters from the Spokane Fire Department, Fairchild Air Force Base, DNR and the Bureau of Land Management.
Fire danger is high in the area and crews have been responding quickly to reported fires, Gifford said. “Anything that gets to a couple acres, we put a lot of resources on,” he said.
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