Officials with the DNR say they have contained about 90 percent of a huge wildfire that broke out Tuesday in far Northwest Wisconsin. Katherine Koele, a wildfire prevention specialist with the agency, warns that number could change with today’s windy conditions that could reignite the fires in some places.
The blaze has scorched about 8,700 acres east and southeast of Solon Springs in Douglas and Bayfield counties. No injuries have been reported. About 50 structures have been destroyed including some homes and cabins.
AUDIO: KDAL early morning interview with DNR’s Katherine Koele (3:00)
Officials said power and phone lines are also down in some places, after several utility poles burned to the ground. People have been evacuated in the Bayfield County town of Barnes and along several lakes.
Federal, local, and state firefighters from both Wisconsin and Minnesota have been working to control the fire. Meanwhile, its cause is still under investigation.
All burning permits in Wisconsin have been suspended for today. The DNR is asking that no campfires be made, and that people avoid smoking in wooded and grassy areas.