LOCAL NEWS

Washington state’s fire season lightest in a decade

Oct 10, 2022, 6:46 AM
(SDIS33 via AP)...
(SDIS33 via AP)
(SDIS33 via AP)

Washington state this year has had the fewest square miles burned in a decade following the second- and third-worst fire seasons on record in 2020 and 2021.

State Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz announced Friday that about 219 square miles (567 square kilometers) burned in 2022 wildfires, The Seattle Times reported.

That’s compared to nearly 781 square miles (2,023 square kilometers) in 2021 and 1,316 square miles (3,408 square kilometers) burned in 2020.

2015 was the state’s worst fire season in recorded history, when more than 1,562 square miles (4,045 square kilometers) burned.

Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz celebrated the moderate fire season, saying a combination of Department of Natural Resources equipment, aerial firefighting assets, personnel, partnerships with other agencies, as well as a rainy spring that delayed the start of this year’s fire season contributed to the success.

Since taking office in 2017, Franz has touted the benefits of controlled burns, and “treating” forests by thinning brush, trimming branches and removing dying trees.

Department of Natural Resources officials since 2017 have tracked over 625 square miles (1,619 square kilometers) of completed treatments, and about 109 square miles (282 square kilometers) of prescribed burns in Central and Eastern Washington.

On Friday, Franz said crews this year were able to keep more than 94% of fires to 10 acres or less.

Franz also stressed that the Bolt Creek fire still burning northeast of Seattle was a reminder that fire “doesn’t see boundaries.”

“As climate change and other factors have worsened the length and impact of fire seasons, turning them instead into fire years, wildfire is no longer an eastside issue – it’s a statewide one,” she said.

The Bolt Creek fire started Sept. 10 just north of Skykomish along U.S. Highway 2. As of Friday afternoon, the fire had torched about 20 square miles (52 square kilometers) and was 36% contained.

The is burning into the Wild Sky Wildnerness and has prompted several closures of the highway. The exact origin and cause are still under investigation, but the Western Washington Incident Management Team confirmed the blaze was human-caused.

Local News

troyer...
Sam Campbell

Tacoma officer: Troyer said newspaper carrier did not threaten him

The trial of Pierce County Sheriff Ed Troyer took a marked turn Wednesday as a key witness appeared to hand the prosecution its case.
15 hours ago
crab...
Chris Martin

Christmas crab dinner could be too expensive this year

For many people, the holidays aren't complete without a crab feast, and seafood retailers are relying on Dungeness more than ever.
15 hours ago
Photo from KIRO 7...
KIRO 7 News Staff

Some Metro trips canceled after steering system issue found in buses

Some King County Metro bus trips are being canceled after more than 100 buses were removed from service due to a mechanical issue.
15 hours ago
(Screengrab from WSDOT Traffic Twitter)...
L.B. Gilbert

Rollover cleared on I-5 in Seattle after hour-long delay

A rollover crash on northbound Interstate 5 at SR 520 in Seattle is causing delays in the area as authorities work to clear up the accident.
15 hours ago
illegal...
Sam Campbell

WA Attorney General sues Federal Way gun store for illegal sales

A Federal Way gun retailer is the subject of a lawsuit after an investigation found the owner was illegally selling high-capacity magazines.
15 hours ago
Covid Vaccine...
Nicole Jennings

Fred Hutch study finds race, sex disparities in COVID trials

A study at Seattle's Fred Hutch found that all was not equal when it came to race and sex in the COVID vaccine and treatment trials.
15 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Washington state’s fire season lightest in a decade