BENTON COUNTY, Wash. - The fire that began on the Yakima Training Center Saturday night and burned over 176,000 acres in Benton and Grant Counties is now mostly contained, and fire crews expect the blaze to be fully contained by midnight on Thursday.
The Range 12 fire that was burning close to Hanford and Sunnyside is 90 percent contained as of Thursday morning, however this number is subject to change. Crews estimate the fire will be fully contained by midnight Thursday.
The Northwest Incident Command team managing the firefighting efforts said 250 homes are threatened by the Range 12 blaze.
Officials say 404 people were assigned to the firefighting efforts, as well as three helicopters, 34 fire engines, and four dozers. As of Thursday morning, 177 of the over 400 people were left, continuing to watch for hot spots and maintain their 90 percent containment.
Map from ArcGIS, Northwest Large Fire Interactive Map
The fire was first reported Saturday night burning outside the Moxee area on the Yakima Training Center in Yakima County, and then spread quickly into Benton County by Sunday due to gusty winds according to crews.
The Range 12 blaze stretched east from the Yakima Training Center toward the Hanford Reservation and southeast toward Benton City.
A red flag warning on Tuesday caused windy conditions, and caused concern for firefighters. However, crews said they were able to complete a line around the entire 117-mile fire perimeter.
Authorities with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) said helicopters and air assistance were released from the incident Thursday. The temporary flight restriction over the fire was also removed according to the Northwest Incident Command Team's latest update on the blaze.
Monday crews burned fire lines along Rattlesnake Mountain and along State Route 240 to deter the fire from growing. Tuesday fire crews patrolled the fire perimeter searching for hot spots, and the Department of Defense worked to suppress the blaze on the Yakima Training Center according to firefighters.
No structures have been damaged in the blaze according to firefighters, and no injuries have been reported either.