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Firefighters work to control Washington wildfires in warmer, drier weather


NESPELEM, Washington — Fire officials say they're making progress on Washington's massive wildfires in central in eastern Washington, but warmer drier weather is expected to make things more challenging over the next few days.

Two big fires burning on the Colville Indian Reservation are now more than 50 percent contained, but fire officials say there are still active areas within the interior of the North Star and Tunk Block fires, which together have burned nearly 575 square miles.

Fire spokeswoman Victoria Williams says they managed to do some helpful burnouts during the past few days and although winds are expected to pick up, they should be blowing in favorable directions.

Williams say more active behavior is expected in the next few days, but the more than 1400 firefighters from 21 states and Australia are ready.

To the west, firefighters are getting a handle on two more big fires. The Okanogan and Chelan complexes, which together have burned more than 378 square miles, are now more than 50 percent contained. The fires continue to burn within the lines and nearly 2,000 people are working on these fires.

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