Washington’s most recent fire season burns fewest acres in a decade

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Washington State Department of Natural Resources celebrated the least amount of acres burned during wildfire season in the past decade.

This year, just over 140,300 acres burned around Washington state. That’s the fewest number of acres burned in the past 10 years.

This is a major accomplishment for Washington DNR, especially considering that 2020 and 2021 were the second and third-worst fire seasons in the state’s history.

“A combination of DNR equipment, aerial firefighting assets, personnel, partnerships with other agencies, as well as a wet and rainy spring that delayed the start of this year’s fire season contributed to our success,” said Hilary Franz, Commissioner of Public Lands.

Franz said House Bill 1168 was a key investment in preparing, preventing and fighting wildfires this season. The bill provided funding for more crews and new equipment, including air resources that helped keep 94 percent of fires to 10 acres or less.

“House Bill 1168 provided DNR with new crews, increased fire suppression overhead and equipment, and a long-term commitment to making our state more resilient while simultaneously upgrading our effectiveness at preventing and suppressing wildland fire,” Commissioner Franz said.

Franz reminded Washingtonians to stay vigilant and urged year-round use of fire prevention best practices, as large fires continue to burn in the state.

“Bolt Creek has reminded us that wildfire doesn’t see boundaries,” Franz said “As climate change and other factors have worsened the length and impact of fire seasons, turning them instead into fire years, wildfire is no longer an eastside issue – it’s a statewide one.”

READ: Level 3 Evacuations lifted for fast-moving wildfire burning in Stevens County