Hanford

Fire that threatened Hanford 90 percent contained

A burnout, as shown on Monday along Powerline Road south of Highway 24, helped contain the Range 12 Fire spreading toward Hanford. Crews had found no hot spots on the fire Thursday morning.
A burnout, as shown on Monday along Powerline Road south of Highway 24, helped contain the Range 12 Fire spreading toward Hanford. Crews had found no hot spots on the fire Thursday morning. Courtesy Northwest Incident Management Team

The Range 12 Fire that threatened the Hanford nuclear reservation was 90 percent contained Thursday after burning 275 square miles this week.

About 170 firefighters and support personnel were assigned to the fire Thursday morning, but crews were gradually being released to go to other wildfires burning in the West.

No helicopters or other air support were assigned to the fire Thursday, but 17 fire engines were still available.

Five teams were patrolling the burned area, with three engines assigned to each team to look for any smoldering areas. No hot spots had been reported by late afternoon. On Monday, a flight over the burned area with infrared equipment found 10 smoldering spots, one of which was a downed telephone line.

A rehabilitation plan is being prepared to evaluate impacts to cultural and natural resources with the burned area, including on the Hanford Reach National Monument. About half of the Arid Lands Ecology Reserve on the monument burned, including Rattlesnake Mountain.

Fire crews staged at the high school in Benton City and were well taken care of by the community. Fresh-picked nectarines and blueberries dropped off by local growers were welcomed. But the most popular donation was the new underwear and socks dropped off for crews traveling from fire to fire across the West.

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