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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Lightning-sparked brush fire near Cheney quickly extinguished Sunday morning

A brush fire near Cheney briefly threatened a home Sunday before firefighters quickly contained it.

Lightning started a fire Saturday night at a property east of Cheney and west of U.S. Route 195 along Aspen Meadows Drive.

At first, the fire only burned a few feet of ground, Spokane County Fire District 3 Capt. Mike Moravec said.

On Sunday, the smoldering remains of the lightning strike grew into a spot fire in the woods and burned 1.4 acres of grass and brush. Area residents were asked to evacuate, although the Level 3 evacuation orders didn’t last long. Level 1 evacuation orders that were in place Sunday morning were lifted Sunday evening.

“Initial attack was pretty quick,” Moravec said, adding that fire bosses – firefighting planes – dropped eight tanks of water on the fire from the air, slowing its progress.

A Washington Department of Natural Resources truck was the first on scene Sunday, Moravec said. That truck had been heading to the Pine Meadows Fire, which burned roughly 140 acres last week in the area of Scottie Dog Lane, Pine Meadow Lane and Hanson Pond Lane.

Fortunately, Moravec said, the fire didn’t “torch” any trees, which allowed firefighters to contain it by noon.

By early afternoon roughly 50 firefighters from Fire District 3, the Bureau of Land Management and the Department of Natural Resources were mopping up the burn, Moravec said. At least 15 trucks were at the fire site.