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Firefighters work at extinguishing the Caldwell fire on July 28, near the Lava Beds National Monument.

Fire crews increased containment Wednesday on the July Complex fires that are burning in and around Lava Beds National Monument.

As of press time, the Caldwell Fire had reached 40 percent containment as it grew to 75,000 acres in size.

A red flag warning was in effect for the area for much of Wednesday afternoon and evening. But despite hot, gusty winds coupled and low humidity, crews made headway. Yet Thursday and Friday are expected to bring more red flag conditions due to wind and humidity.

A mandatory evacuation remains in place for the Medicine Lake Recreation Area. The Lava Beds National Monument remains closed. All other evacuations in the area were lifted Tuesday.

The lightning-caused Gillem Fire was active more Tuesday as it grew has to 3,669 acres. It is burning in difficult terrain that is not fully accessible to firefighters.

In order to mitigate COVID-19 risks, fire managers established two new fire camps, allowing personnel to spread out and maintain social distancing recommendations to the best extent possible.

The Allen and Dalton Fires are now 100 percent contained. Fire managers anticipate being able to transfer command of these fires back to the Modoc National Forest.