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Sunday, February 23, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Stories tagged: wildfire


California firefighters return from battling Australia fires

Twenty firefighters from California have returned to the United States after spending nearly a month battling wildfires in Australia.


California bill seeks takeover of nation’s largest utility

Frustrated by repeated safety lapses at the nation’s largest electric company, a California lawmaker on Monday introduced legislation that would force taxpayers to buy the struggling utility and turn it …


Wildfire creates state of emergency in Australian capital

The Australian capital region declared a state of emergency on Friday because of an out-of-control forest fire burning erratically to its south.


UPDATED: Thu., Jan. 9, 2020

As wildfires get worse, smoke spreads, stokes health worries

Increasingly intense wildfires that have scorched forests from California to Australia are stoking worry about long-term health impacts from smoke exposure in affected cities and towns.


Raging wildfires trap 4,000 at Australian town’s waterfront

Wildfires burning across Australia’s two most populous states Tuesday trapped residents of a seaside town in apocalyptic conditions and killed at least two people while more property along the country’s …


UPDATED: Mon., Dec. 30, 2019

California’s Gov. Newsom had ‘baptism by fire’ in 1st year

During his inaugural address last January, California Gov. Gavin Newsom made only a passing reference to wildfires and never mentioned the state’s largest utility, Pacific Gas & Electric. Both soon …


Thousands of koalas feared dead in Australia wildfires

Thousands of koalas are feared to have died in a wildfire-ravaged area north of Sydney, further diminishing Australia’s iconic marsupial, while the fire danger increased in the country’s east as …


Australia’s most populous state declares wildfire emergency

Australia’s most populous state of New South Wales declared a seven-day state of emergency Thursday as oppressive conditions fanned around 100 wildfires.


UPDATED: Fri., Dec. 13, 2019

As California thins forests to limit fire risk, some resist

Buzzing chainsaws are interrupted by the frequent crash of breaking branches as crews fell towering trees and clear tangled brush in the densely forested Santa Cruz Mountains south of San …


UPDATED: Fri., Dec. 6, 2019

Arsonist gets six months in jail for 2016 fires north of Spokane

The fires were small but diverted firefighters and resources from two much larger blazes that erupted on the same day in Spokane and Valleyford, destroying homes, crops and other property.


Tech aims to predict problems on power lines before disaster

B. Don Russell wasn’t thinking about preventing a wildfire when he developed a tool to detect power line problems before they cause equipment failures, blackouts or even deadly accidents. But …


Washington public lands commissioner pitching new home, auto insurance charge to pay for wildfire efforts

The new charges would go into effect in 2021, if passed, and provide the state a stable source of money for timber treatment, the purchase of new firefighting equipment and …


Wildfire burning in California mountains grows

A wildfire burning Tuesday on Southern California mountains north of Santa Barbara forced as many as 6,300 people from their homes, but an approaching storm offered hope that the flames …


UPDATED: Thu., Nov. 14, 2019

California’s wildfire, blackout crisis: Who’s to blame?

The utility that serves more than 5 million electrical customers in one of the world’s most technologically advanced areas is now faced again and again with a no-win decision: risk …


‘Unprecedented’ number of emergency-level wildfires scorch eastern Australia

An “unprecedented” outbreak of emergency-level bush fires has scorched a vast area of Australia’s southeastern state of New South Wales during the past few days, with fire weather only beginning …


California burning: Welcome to the Golden State’s war without end

You smell it, or think you do. Like a bonfire on a beach. Then you see it in your headlights. Ash. Or maybe insects? The signs are coy at first, …


UPDATED: Fri., Nov. 1, 2019

Maria fire in Ventura County erupts to more than 8,000 acres

A fast-moving brush fire whipped by lingering Santa Ana winds exploded to more than 8,000 acres overnight in Ventura County, burning at least one home and forcing mandatory evacuations.


Disabled California seniors in complex left behind in outage

At least 20 seniors with wheelchairs and walkers were essentially trapped, in the dark, in a low-income apartment complex in Northern California during a two-day power shut-off aimed at warding …


UPDATED: Wed., Oct. 30, 2019

Wildfires outside L.A. threaten homes, spare Reagan library

A wind-whipped outbreak of wildfires outside Los Angeles is threatening thousands of homes and horse ranches and forcing the smoky evacuation of elderly patients in wheelchairs. The flames narrowly bypassed …


UPDATED: Tue., Oct. 29, 2019

Anger rises as California utility imposes more blackouts

Frustration and anger mounted across Northern California as the state’s biggest utility began another round of fire-prevention blackouts Tuesday that could leave millions of people without electricity, some for five …


Avista would not use California blackout strategy to prevent wildfires

Avista is watching the California wildfires in hopes of gaining insight on how to prevent or contain such problems in the Northwest.


California declares state of emergency over fires, winds

SANTA ROSA, California – California’s governor declared a statewide emergency Sunday after officials ordered nearly 200,000 people to leave their homes as hurricane-force winds drove multiple wildfires through bone-dry vegetation. …


UPDATED: Fri., Oct. 25, 2019

Bigger, longer blackouts could lie ahead in California

A wildfire in California wine country that may have been caused by a high-voltage transmission line called into question Pacific Gas & Electric’s strategy of selectively cutting off power in …


Firefighters taming Southern California blaze as winds fade

Firefighters aided by diminishing winds are taming a Southern California wildfire that damaged or destroyed 30 structures along the northern edge of the city.


UPDATED: Fri., Oct. 11, 2019

Fast-moving fire drives thousands from California homes

‘It was a whole curtain of fire’: Authorities order 100,000 evacuated in California wildfire


UPDATED: Thu., Oct. 10, 2019

California utility faces gripes over deliberate blackouts

Even with the winds kicking up dangerously, California’s biggest utility is facing gripes and second-guessing for shutting off electricity to millions of people to prevent its equipment from sparking wildfires


Power outages begin in California amid hot, windy weather

California’s biggest utility shut off electricity to more than a million people Wednesday for what could be days on end, in the most sweeping effort in state history to prevent …


UPDATED: Mon., Sept. 23, 2019

California utility cuts power to 21,000 customers amid fire danger

California’s largest utility began cutting power to 21,000 northern customers Monday evening as fall brings back dangerous weather conditions and the company tries to head off wildfires sparked by electrical …


PG&E reaches $11B deal with California wildfire insurers

Pacific Gas & Electric has agreed to pay $11 billion to a group of insurance companies representing most of the claims from Northern California wildfires in 2017 and 2018 as …


UPDATED: Tue., Sept. 3, 2019

Injured Okanogan firefighter remains in critical condition

Christian Johnson, assistant chief with Okanogan County Fire District No. 3, was injured while fighting the Spring Coulee Fire that grew quickly to 142 acres on Sunday afternoon southwest of …