Brush fires in Cowlitz County force evacuations

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Brush fires have forced evacuations and road closures near Longview and in Kelso Wednesday night, according to Cowlitz County.

The evacuation order affects homes on Walker Road in Kelso and all roads off Walker Road, officials said. They said the order will remain in effect for the night.

Lt. Bryan Ditterick, with Cowlitz County Fire, said there are four wildfires in the area and 100 homes have been evacuated. The fires started in the North Maple Hill Road area.

About 30 to 40 acres have burned.

Earlier, emergency officials described the wildfires as “fast moving” but they have since slowed.

State mobilization of resources has been approved.

Evacuees can go to the Kalama High School gym at 548 China Garden Road.

Officials said they will demobilize the overnight shelter if it's not needed. They advise people who need the shelter to call 360-577-3130 before 10 p.m. Officials will also post a phone number at the shelter that can be used to re-mobilize the shelter, if needed.

Brush fires west of Longview have also closed Ragland and Carlon Loop roads.

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