Better Weather May Help Firefighters Fight Massive Washington Blaze

Calmer winds and cooler temperatures helped firefighters Monday against a destructive wildfire that has burned hundreds of square miles in Washington State.

The Carlton Complex of fires in north-central Washington had burned about 379 square miles, and the fire was 2 percent contained on Monday, according to fire officials.

Firefighters planned to protect some homes near Libby Creek on Monday, but estimates are that 150 homes or more in the area have been destroyed already. The fire is being blamed for one death.

wildfireFirefighters were also hampered by the loss of electricity in the area due to downed power lines and poles.

The forecast for Monday and Tuesday called for lighter winds and lower temperatures followed on Wednesday by a stronger front that should bring rain to much of the state, according to the National Weather Service

There are more than 1,600 firefighters battling the flames, assisted by more than 100 fire engines, helicopters dropping buckets of water and planes spreading flame retardant, fire officials said.