natural disasters

Residents Report Central Washington Smells Like Smoke

Sep 13, 2012
Photo by user Teresia / Flickr

The smell of smoke hangs in the air across much of central Washington Wednesday. At least four significant wildfires are burning around Wenatchee, making the skies hazy. Vicky Cibcki works at the Anjou Bakery near the town of Cashmere.

Photo by Tom Banse / Northwest News Network

A damaging wildfire in central Washington has been declared 100 percent contained, this more than two weeks after it ignited. Correspondent Tom Banse reports.

Photo courtesy Wash. Department of Ecology

Firefighters are getting a better handle on the Taylor Bridge fire burning in central Washington State. Fire crews say they have the fire 90 percent contained. So far the blaze has destroyed more than 50 homes and displaced many residents and livestock. Correspondent Anna King reports.

Trinity Ridge Fire Gets Closer To Featherville

Aug 21, 2012

More than a thousand fire fighters in Idaho are working to protect homes as a massive wildfire moves closer to the mountain communities of Pine and Featherville. Sadie Babits reports.

The Trinity Ridge fire burning 100 miles northeast of Boise remains the state’s number one firefighting priority. That’s because the wildfire continues to threaten hundreds of homes in Pine and Featherville. Mary Christensen – a fire information officer – says thick smoke lifted and now the wildfire has picked up.

Photo courtesy Veseth family via U.S. Forest Service

Managers at a blaze in north Idaho were warned about hazardous conditions the day before a 20-year-old firefighter died on the job. That’s according to an informal report by the head of a federal hotshot crew, which refused to work on the fire. Correspondent Jessica Robinson has more.

Photo courtesy Wash. Department of Natural Resources

Dramatic images of destruction from a central Washington wildfire this week haave prompted an overwhelming flood of donations to fire victims. So much that the state of Washington is urging well meaning donors to stop giving food and clothing and donate money instead. In Cle Elum, correspondent Courtney Flatt checked out the brimming donation centers.

Photo courtesy Wash. Deptartment of Natural Resources

Fire bosses at the scene of a destructive wildfire in central Washington gave an upbeat progress report at a community briefing in Cle Elum Friday. Firefighters targeted full containment of the nearly 23,000 acre blaze by Sunday. Reporter Courtney Flatt is on the scene. She says the mood at the community briefing was more curious than anything else.

Photo courtesy Wash. Department of Natural Resources

A large wildfire in the remote mountains of Central Washington state has burned 22 thousand acres . The Northwest News Network’s Anna King reports the fire has destroyed at least 60 structures from Cle Elum.

Nearly 800 firefighters have been battling the wind-whipped fire for several days. 18-year-old Tyler Oversby stared as giant plumes of smoke crept closer to his hometown.

Firefighting Still Dangerous, But For Different Reasons

Aug 14, 2012
Photo courtesy Veseth family via U.S. Forest Service

The U.S. Forest Service has identified a firefighter killed in Idaho on Sunday as 20-year-old Anne Veseth, of Moscow, Idaho. She was struck by a falling tree at the Steep Corner Fire southeast of Coeur d’Alene. As Jessica Robinson reports, firefighting deaths fluctuate from year to year, but the biggest source of that danger has shifted.

Photo by Tom Banse / Northwest News Network

Central Washington was considered at low risk for earthquakes back when big hydropower dams went up on the Columbia River many decades ago. But a recently completed seismic hazard assessment has found greater earthquake potential for the area than previously thought. Now the dam owners have to figure out how to respond. Seismic retrofits could cost ratepayers across the region hundreds of millions of dollars. Correspondent Tom Banse has this exclusive report.

Photo by Amelia Templeton

Officials say the massive Long Draw fire in South East Oregon stopped actively burning over the weekend. The fire consumed more than 900 square miles of rangeland. Amelia Templeton reports, ranchers are searching for their cows.

Photo credit: Tim Melbourne, CWU / Northwest News Network

A prototype, earthquake early warning system, worked as designed when an actual quake gently shook California last Friday. Researchers reported the results Tuesday at the annual meeting of American seismologists.

Last year, a private foundation in collaboration with the U.S. Geological Survey gave a multimillion dollar grant to create an automated earthquake warning system for the Pacific Coast states. The idea is to provide advance notice to prepare people for severe shaking. It could come via a cell phone alert or a pop-up on your computer or TV screen.