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Published on July 10, 2024
Washington State Proactively Activates Fire Assistance for Lower Columbia Region in Anticipation of WildfiresSource: Facebook/Washington State Patrol

The state of Washington is taking preemptive measures to tackle the wildfires that have become a near-annual ordeal for the region. In an announcement made by the Washington State Patrol, state fire assistance has been activated as a precautionary step to support the Lower Columbia area, known for its susceptibility to blazes.

This mobilization, detailed on the Washington State Patrol's official website, came into effect on July 9 at 5:00 p.m. The green light was given by State Patrol Chief John Batiste after a call to action from Wesley Long, the Lower Columbia Fire Defense Region Coordinator and Fire Chief for Klickitat County Fire District 3. Current conditions in Kittitas, Yakima, and Klickitat Counties—multiple days of overheating, desiccation, and gusts—have resulted in National Weather Service Red Flag Warnings, highlighting the need for heightened alertness and readiness.

The level of concern is further underscored by the State Emergency Operations Center's maintained activation at Level 2, as per the Washington State Patrol. Although functioning in a partial capacity, the Center is integral for coordinating the state's strategic response, including this specific pre-positioning event which involves staging firefighting resources strategically within the aforementioned counties.