LOOMIS – A fire that began Tuesday afternoon, Aug. 18, is burning in the mountains west of Oroville between Wannacut and Palmer Lakes.
A Level 2 evacuation notice was issued at 4 p.m. and a Level 3 (get out now) evacuation notice was issued at 8:50 p.m. for people living in the area. Okanogan County Sheriff’s Office, state Department of Fish and Wildlife and U.S. Border Patrol agents made door-to-door notifications for people south and west of Wannacut Lake.
The blaze was reported at 2:51 p.m. halfway up Washburn Lake Road.
The state Department of Natural Resources is on scene, with aerial and ground attacks being made. Firefighters from Okanogan/Fire District No. 3 and Fire District No. 7 also were dispatched to the area Wednesday morning.
Winds reportedly were shifting driving the fire in all directions, consuming grass, scrubs and trees, said emergency management.
By 6 p.m. Tuesday, the fire was estimated at 1,000 acres and by Wednesday morning it was estimated at 6,000 acres.
A Type 3 management team is coordinating the fire fight, but a Type 2 team was ordered for Aug. 20, according to the DNR.
Okanogan County Public Utility District personnel were staged in the area in case power needed to be cut.
People who need shelter may contact the American Red Cross, 509-670-5331.
Evacuated farm animals may be taken to the Tonasket Rodeo Grounds.
People from Oroville to Omak also offered places for evacuees to take animals or park their rigs.
Road closures include Wannacut Lake Road at Ellemeham Mountain Road, Ellis Barnes Road and at Loomis-Oroville Road, Blue Lake Road at Lake Front Road and Washburn Lake Road at the Loomis-Oroville Road