The whole town of Medical Lake, Washington was ordered to be evacuated on Friday as a wildfire approached.

wildfire at Yellowknife

Wildfire at Medical Lake

According to tweets from the Washington State Department of Natural Resources, the Gray Fire, which was pushed by 35 mph gusts, went from an estimated 500 acres to approximately 3,000 acres in a matter of hours on Friday afternoon. It had already scorched property inside the city limits by 5 o’clock. The population of Medical Lake, which is 12 miles southwest of Spokane, is close to 5,000.

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources reported that the fire had jumped Interstate 90 and forced the closure of a section of that highway close to the village of Four Lakes on Friday night on X, the social media network that replaced Twitter.


Dry weather and the potential for gusty winds, which could allow new or current flames to spread quickly, were cited by the National Weather Service as “critical fire conditions,” prompting the warning. The fire’s origin is being looked into.

About 15 miles (24 km) southwest of Spokane is Medical Lake.

According to the state fire marshal’s office, the so-called Gray Fire started around noon and was raging amid grass, forest, and wheat. The office added that the fire threatened residences, a hospital, a highway, and the neighborhood of Medical Lake.

A level 3 evacuation, or “go now,” was ordered for the 4,800 residents of the area.

“We are aware of some house fires. We don’t know how many, according to department spokesman Joe Smillie. “This accelerated like a rocket, really quickly. It has been quite warm throughout the previous week.


After 5 o’clock, the fire jumped Interstate 90, blocking sections of the highway in both directions and causing authorities to start evacuating the 500-person little community of Four Lakes. State Route 902, another significant road, was also closed in both directions close to Medical Lake.

Sheriff John Nowels of Spokane County stated that no accidents or fatalities had been reported in Medical Lake. He claimed that on Friday, his deputies were “running from house to house” inside the evacuation zone, pleading with residents to evacuate their residences.

According to Nowels, the fire is “zero percent” contained and spreading into neighborhoods and a school, among other more populated locations.

He guessed that over 100 law enforcement personnel had attended to the fires.

“We’ve had to use boats to rescue individuals. People have needed to be saved by helicopter, Nowels added. “Exit if you’re in an evacuation zone. Some of the attendees present refuse to leave. They must be saved when fire breaks out where they are.

On Friday in the late afternoon, 20 members of the Washington Air National Guard assisted in the evacuation of the 367-bed inpatient psychiatric facility Eastern State facility’s patients and employees.

Reason of Wildfire

Smillie claimed that the wildfire’s origin was unclear.

On Friday afternoon, the organization urged individuals to find sanctuary in a high school in the nearby town of Cheney. According to Smillie, Cheney was under a level-one evacuation notice by Friday night, which meant that citizens needed to be prepared to depart. If the fire proceeded to approach Cheney, he claimed that officials were formulating an evacuation plan for residents.

On Friday afternoon, two other fires were ignited in different regions of Washington state. As of around 5 p.m., the wildfires in Washington’s Douglas and Whitman counties each covered around 5,000 acres, according to Smillie.


The National Weather Service reported that a large portion of inland Washington state was under a red flag warning on Friday.

Critical wildfire conditions will result from the persistence of warm, dry winds throughout the afternoon, according to experts.


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