Commissioner of Public Lands: Wildfire update

Thursday, July 21, 2022

Don’t be the spark. Click here to view a short video about actions we all can take to prevent wildfire.
From Hilary Franz, Washington State Commissioner of Public Lands

Fire season appears to be trending toward normal this year. Significant fire potential is still predicted for the remainder of July and August. Because of the very wet spring, the drought outlook has shifted. 

In western Washington, there is a complete rebound from any drought impacts of last year. In eastern Washington, there is improvement being seen in the classifications every day. That bodes well — we’re cautiously optimistic.

However, just because we’ve seen a slow start to the year doesn’t mean you can let your guard down while recreating or burning yard debris. Don’t be the spark.

We’ve seen fire seasons shift abruptly before — everyone remembers the 2020 Labor Day firestorm that flipped the script from a successful year to the second-most acres burned in state history in just a matter of hours.

Even in a year with light statewide fire activity, wildfire can still have massive local impacts. As I write this to you, the Stayman Flats Fire has burned approximately 1,200 acres some five miles southwest of Chelan. 

Level 3 evacuations forced people from their homes, with flames clearly visible from town. Let’s all commit to remaining vigilant and protecting our lands — and our fellow citizens — from such fires.


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