Wildfire near INL burns 113,000 acres, but officials say it’s near containment

Fire officials expect that the Sheep Fire, which burned more than 113,000 aces near the Idaho National Laboratory in eastern Idaho, will be contained by Friday.

INL reported Thursday that work would continue as normal at the lab, after nonessential employees were previously evacuated. Initially, INL was hopeful the fire could be contained Thursday, but as of 11 a.m. they were at 60 percent containment with no active burning visible.

The fire started Monday evening after a lightning strike in the area, but no one was injured in the fire and structures were not damaged.

Routine radiological monitoring at all site locations is consistent with normal background levels at the nuclear lab, officials said.

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Reporter Ruth Brown covers the criminal justice and correctional systems in Idaho. She focuses on breaking news, public safety and social justice. Prior to coming to the Idaho Statesman, she was a reporter at the Idaho Press-Tribune, the Bakersfield Californian and the Idaho Falls Post Register.