Heavy rain not helping efforts to fight Washington wildfire - WNEM TV 5

Heavy rain not helping efforts to fight Washington wildfire

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Lightning and mudslides from constant rain are hindering crews trying to extinguish the Carlton Complex Fire, believed to be the largest in Washington state's history. (Source: KOMO/CNN) Lightning and mudslides from constant rain are hindering crews trying to extinguish the Carlton Complex Fire, believed to be the largest in Washington state's history. (Source: KOMO/CNN)

WINTHROP, WA (KOMO/CNN) - The threat of more dangerous weather could hinder efforts to fight what's being called the largest wildfire in Washington's history.

Several wildfires, collectively known as the Carlton Complex Fire, were 52 percent contained early Thursday morning.

Lightning has kept some crews off the mountains, and the persistent threat from rain moisture could create more mudslides and damage.

"You don't want to be around trees that have been burning for a while when the wind starts blowing," said Alan Hofmeister with incident command. "Water starts running, it's too dangerous."

Winthrop was walloped by a heavy storm late Wednesday afternoon with hail that lingered and damaged trees.

By early evening, the rain was constant.

Photos posted by the Chelan emergency crews in Entiat, WA, show mudslides already happening in areas charred by the Mills Canyon Fire.

Part of Entiat River Road near mile post 12 was shut down, and there may be more to come.

Video from the Washington National Guard showed crews mopping up lines even farther south in the Chiwaukum Creek Fire, sometimes going from tree to tree.

Winthrop's outdoor meeting revealed power and internet restoration may go from weeks to days, but the weather still remains a serious priority for safety.

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