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'Human-caused' Bolt Creek Fire is now 36% contained, nears 12,500 acres

The fire will cause smoky skies in the Seattle area and those closer to US 2 may experience "unhealthy for sensitive groups" air quality on Monday.

SKYKOMISH, Wash. — The Western Washington Incident Management Team confirmed the Bolt Creek Fire was human-caused.

According to authorities, the fire has grown to approximately 12,486 acres and is 36% contained. The fire is continuing to spread into the Wild Sky Wildnerness, primarily around Eagle Rock north of Skykomish. The exact origin and cause details are still under investigation.

Officials said rolling material from the sky ignited unburnt fuel Sunday along US 2 just beyond the 5th Street Bridge turnoff in Skykomish, which resulted in a reroute through downtown as emergency crews extinguished the flare-up. 

US 2 was closed between MP 49 to MP 50 as well. The one-mile stretch that previously was closed had been reopened by about 8:45 p.m. Sunday night. 

Officials anticipate infrequent and short closures to continue this week. Check the status of road closures on the Washington State Department of Transportation's website.

Evacuation guidance for this fire is no longer in place for residents in both Snohomish and King counties. Residents in the area should remain alert as conditions could change quickly, and evacuations may again become necessary. Click here for the latest evacuation information.

According to the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency, the fire will continue to impact air quality on Monday. The greater Seattle area will experience "good" to "moderate" air quality as the fire burns. Some areas closer to US Route 2 could also see "unhealthy for sensitive groups" air quality. 

The PS Clean Air Agency also said the smoke could stick around longer because winds are staying calm.

Over the weekend, firefighters monitored the containment lines while reinforcing them as necessary. They also worked on mop-up, chipping and hazard tree mitigation in many of these areas.

In addition to the repair activities, the Burned Area Emergency Response Team (BAER) continued their watershed assessments in the fire area over the weekend.

For more information on the BAER Team’s ongoing assessment of the fire area, including identifying any potential values at risk of potential post-fire flooding and deciding what emergency stabilization measures to take, check out their Inciweb page.

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