Kittitas County State of Emergency Declared for Colockum Tarps F - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Kittitas County State of Emergency Declared for Colockum Tarps Fire

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KITTITAS COUNTY, Wash. - Kittitas County Commissioners declared a state of emergency this afternoon to get more help fighting the Colockum Tarps Fire.  Its burning south of Wenatchee onto Kittitas County land.  Here's the latest release from the county including changes to evacuation notifications.

 7-30-13 1645 HOURS – Colockum Tarps Fire

Kittitas County, WA -07/30/2013 - Effective 1300 today, the Kittitas County Sheriff's Office has upgraded the Emergency Operations Center to Level 2 in order to activate additional EOC divisions and in preparation of the utilization of additional resources for the Colockum Tarps Fire. The Kittitas County Board of Commissioners declared a State of Emergency as of 1415 today.

The fire continues to move south in Kittitas County and has grown to 52,000 acres as of 1000 this morning.  There have no reports of structure loss in Kittitas County, and there is no imminent threat to residences at this point.

 

Due to the southern movement of the fire, the Sheriff's Office has issued a Level 3 Evacuation notice from the northern Kittitas County line south to Skookumchuck Creek and Scammon Landing, along the western shoreline of the Columbia River.

 

The Columbia River is open to recreational activity, however, the Sheriff's Office recommends boaters use extreme caution and be aware of helicopters in the area assisting in the firefighting efforts.

 

The Wild Horse Wind Farm is now under a Level 2 evacuation notice.  The Renewable Energy Center is now closed to the public.  Only property owners and authorized personnel supporting the firefighting efforts are allowed access through the wind farm.

 

The Level 2 Evacuation notifications remain in place for residences in the following areas: Colockum Pass Road north of the end of the pavement, Trail Creek Road, Sheep Creek Road, Tucker Creek Road, Secret Canyon Road, Ryegrass Ranches Road, and Parke Creek Road north of the end of the pavement, including Hilltop Loop.

 

Under a Level 2 notice, residents should prepare to leave at a moment's notice, as potentially dangerous conditions exist that may threaten residences.

 

A Level 1 Evacuation notice is now in effect for the Whiskey Wildlife Area as well.

 

The following roads remain closed to public access: Colockum Road at the end of the pavement, Schnebly Canyon Road at the green gate (at the intersection of Fairview and Thomas Roads), Parke Creek Road at the end of the county road, Coleman Canyon Road at the end of the county road, and Cooke Canyon Road at the end of the county road.

 

The Sheriff's Office will assist the Department of Natural Resources and the Department of Fish and Wildlife with support and enforcement of road closures in these areas.

 

The smokey conditions throughout the county are expected to continue due to wind direction, and the Kittitas County Public Health Department continues to monitor air quality.

 

Residents affected by the fire can contact the Kittitas County Emergency Operations Center at 509-933-8305 during business hours, 8:00am-5:00pm, or Kittcom at 509-925-8534 during non-business hours.  The public is also encouraged to monitor the County website for updates, http://www.co.kittitas.wa.us/.  For fire information, please visit http://inciweb.org/incident/3567/, or contact the Colockum Tarps Fire at 509-662-9984.

Kittitas County, from the Cascades to the Columbia, and online at http://www.co.kittitas.wa.us
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For more information (press only):
Undersheriff Clay Myers 509-962-7525 or 509-925-8534
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