Sunday, July 21, 2024

Chelan County Sheriff arrests teen in connection to Balsamroot Fire


WENATCHEE- An arrest has been made in connection with the July 5 Balsamroot Fire in the Horselake area of the Wenatchee Foothills. 

The fire began around 3 a.m. on July 5 in a fireworks related ignition. It quickly spread throughout the Foothills, growing to over 100 acres by 10 a.m. and a reported 250 acres by 11:00 a.m. Level 3 (get out now) evacuation notices were issued in the Horselake Road area, including Westview Place, Westwick Road, Kookaburra Run, West Morland Drive, and the Maiden Lane area. The rapid fire growth threatened hundreds of Wenatchee structures, prompting an immediate joint response from both local and state firefighting teams as early as 5:30 a.m. 

By 11:30 a.m., all evacuation notices were lowered to a level 1 (stay alert) notice following 30% containment of the Balsamroot Fire. By 4 p.m., officials reported 50% containment, with around 200 structures saved from the flames. 

Sgt. Jason Matthews of the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office reported that a 16-year-old boy has been arrested in connection with the fire. Details surrounding the arrest are currently unfolding. 

For active information on the status of local wildfires and to access a live Emergency Incidents Map, visit

Will Nilles: (509) 731-3211 or


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