AUBURN, Wash. (AP) — A burn pile that got out of control Sunday evening triggered a brush fire that burned up a steep hillside near homes along Green Valley Road between Auburn and Black Diamond.
“A neighbor called me and said the hillside is on fire moving towards my barn,” said Mike Cooper. He quickly moved his livestock and grabbed the garden hose to try to douse as much of the fast-moving brush fire as he could, KOMO-TV reported.
The Department of Natural Resources brought in their helicopter for water drops because the terrain was so difficult to get to.
“It’s weird there’s never been a big fire out here,” Cooper said. “I’ve seen a lot of them on the east side (of the state) and you’d think it’s all green over here it’s not going to burn, and it’s 80 degrees and there’s dry dead grass it just takes off.”
It hasn’t rained in more than a week, and easterly offshore winds boosted the temperatures and kept the humidity low for days. Windy conditions the fire fight a challenge.
“It’s an early fire season this year and with the hot weather we’ve had it’s not really surprising,” said Pat Pawlak, who was working as public information officer for Mountainview Fire and Rescue.
Crews on Sunday night were working the fire from the bottom of the hillside and top – hopeful to made headway by morning.