- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 5, 2015

ROOSEVELT, Wash. (AP) - The evacuation order for the town of Roosevelt was lifted Wednesday after a fast-growing wildfire bypassed the community, fire spokesman Ron Fryer said.

“People are back in their homes,” Fryer said of the approximately 300 residents of the Columbia River town.

Residents remain under notice to be able to leave quickly if conditions change, Fryer said.

None of the 350 homes that were threatened in the area have burned and there were no reported injuries, Fryer said.

The grass fire grew to 26 square miles by Wednesday afternoon, after being reported at 15 square miles earlier in the day, Fryer said.

State Route 14 through Roosevelt remained closed, he said.

State and local crews were fighting the blaze, located about a mile north of the Klickitat County town on the Oregon border.

Mandatory evacuation of the town was ordered Tuesday afternoon, shortly after the fire started. The cause is under investigation.

Roosevelt, which was on the route of the Lewis and Clark Expedition in the 19th century, is near the Oregon border, about 120 miles east of Portland, Oregon.

Meanwhile, firefighters slowed the growth of the fire along parts of Lake Chelan. A smoke inversion lifted on Tuesday, allowing helicopters to attack the flames with water-bucket drops, officials said.

Firefighters expect that fire, which covers about 40 square miles, to continue moving south along Lake Chelan toward Graham Harbor. They were keeping a wary eye on gusty winds forecast for Wednesday.

Mandatory evacuations remain in effect for Holden Village, Lucerne, Domke Lake, Riddle and Lightning Creek.

But the Lake Chelan Chamber of Commerce issued a news release saying the tourist community was open for business and urged people not to cancel their travel plans.

The fire started June 29 from lightning in remote timber and grass on the west side of the popular lake. It grew over the weekend amid hot, dry weather and down-lake winds. The blaze has shut down a section of the Pacific Crest Trail and several campgrounds.


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