Columbia River Gorge wildfire forces evacuations

WISHRAM, Wash. (KGW) – More resources were deployed Wednesday to knock down the flames as quickly as possible.

So far, there have been no injuries or fatalities. Containment is at 30% and 50 to 75 homes are being threatened.

On the Oregon side of the Columbia River looking back over at the Washington side, one can see random wisps of smoke and the area the fire burned.

Crews worked through the night building fire lines to contain the flames, but wind could bring new challenges for firefighters. They’re hoping the fire won’t grow too much Wednesday.

From KGW’s Sky-8, you can see the flames, the smoke and the scorched hills. It’s a result of the fire burning in Klickitat County.

It started yesterday afternoon at milepost 90 just off State Route 14. that stretch of highway was closed in both directions between Dallesport and Maryhill because of the fire.

Nicole Lundin’s husband is one of the firefighters working to contain the fire. “He was out all night I haven’t seen him,” Lundin said.

Many firefighters are doing what they can to help. And with some areas under evacuation orders, Lundin’s helping as much as she can too. She said, “I just wanted to check in with the Red Cross and if there was any need for someone to take a couple of dogs or something like that, I have plenty of space for dogs.”

At Goldendale High School there’s plenty of space for people at the Red Cross shelter.

No one stayed overnight, but Red Cross volunteers are at the ready, saying “We are here to help you. Please come by if you need our assistance. That’s what we do.”

Also ready to jump into action are firefighters posted up at Goldendale Middle School.

Lundin knows the dry brush may mean a bad fire season, but for now, she’s just hoping that if people need help with their pets, she’s there to do what she can. “I want them to know that their neighbors are here to help.”

Speaking of neighbors who need help,  Wishram Heights and an area south of Centerville are under evacuation orders.

As for the firefight Wednesday, a couple additional strike teams are expected which puts more boots on the ground as well.

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