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Fire crews continue to battle flames in west-central Idaho


BOISE, Idaho — Fire crews are aggressively working to prevent flames from expanding in west-central Idaho, where a wildfire has already burned 143 square miles of dry timber.

More than 900 firefighters are battling the blaze. The fire first ignited nearly three weeks ago, but only 30 percent of the fire has been contained in a terrain surrounded by large amounts of unburned fuel.

As of Wednesday, crews were focusing their efforts to protect structures along the Salmon River corridor, and rafters are still being stopped and evacuated before entering the fire perimeter.

Up in northern Idaho, overnight flames crept as close as a mile and a half to the historic Fenn Ranger Station, causing mandatory evacuations to be in effect.

Idaho currently has 17 large fires, the most in the nation, the National Interagency Fire Center says.

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