Protection Island fire extinguished after burning 22 acres

Cause remains under investigation

PROTECTION ISLAND — Firefighters were able to bring the Protection Island fire under control and had it extinguished by Wednesday afternoon.

The fire is estimated to have burned about 22 acres of long grass on the 379-acre island between Tuesday and Wednesday.

By Wednesday morning, a fire line had been established, and officials were able to let it burn itself out, said Janet Pearce, communications manager for the state Department of Natural Resources (DNR).

The cause of the fire remains under investigation, Pearce said.

One person lives on the island, but that resident was not there on Tuesday.

The fire was discovered by whale watchers who noticed smoke coming from Protection Island on Tuesday morning, and officials started to arrive at the island by 2 p.m., Pearce said.

A DNR helicopter and a U.S. Forest Service engine crew and firefighters worked together to control the blaze Tuesday.

Officials are asking anyone who saw a suspicious person or boats in the area to contact investigators at 425-783-6150, according to a social media post by the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

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Jefferson County reporter Zach Jablonski can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 5, or at [email protected]

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