Cle Elum fire more than half contained



YAKIMA — Fire crews reached 57 percent containment Monday on a Central Washington wildfire that has burned dozens of homes.

Crews worked to gain the upper hand on several wildfires burning east of the Cascade Mountains in advance of predicted thunderstorms that could bring lightning and possibly new blazes.

The Taylor Bridge Fire east of Cle Elum has burned across more than 36 square miles of grass, sagebrush and timber. About 1,000 firefighters were fighting the blaze. On Monday, some of them conducted controlled burns of potential fuel.

Fire management officials said they hoped for full containment by Tuesday.

Meanwhile, a new, lightning-caused fire near Wenatchee was reported close to full containment. The Keane Ranch Fire has burned 1 square mile of grass, brush and timber. It has not threatened or damaged any structures.