Taylor Bridge Fire UpdatePosted: Updated:
CLE ELUM, Wash. - State Firefighting crews have moved in to fight the Taylor Bridge fire that started Monday just east of Cle Elum and is still moving toward Thorp. The Deputy Incident Commander from Team 2 says more than 20,000 acres have burned, with strong winds pushing flames through a stretch of valley 13 miles long. The fire is still 0% contained. At least 60 homes have been lost, 100 more homes are threatened. About 500 people have evacuated, shelters are set up at the Centennial Senior Center in Cle Elum (call 509-933-8305 with evacuation questions) and at Munson Hall at Central Washington University. So far 15 evacuees are staying at CWU, but organizers have been told to expect at least 150. Animals have been taken to the Kittitas County Fairgrounds in Ellensburg, 105 are there so far but we're told more are on the way. FEMA funds have been authorized to pay for up to 75% of the state's costs to fight the fire, partly because federal officials are worried about the fire also threatening major power transmission lines and a wind power generating facility. There are air quality warnings in multiple counties including Kittitas, Yakima and Benton, people are advised to limit outdoor activity. There are two public meetings scheduled for Wednesday, one at Cle Elum/Roslyn High School at 4:00 pm, the other at the CWU Student Union Recreation Center at 7:00 pm.