The Latest: Southwest Colorado wildfire grows to 360 acres | PostIndependent.com

The Latest: Southwest Colorado wildfire grows to 360 acres

A structure burning on Lightner Creek Road west of Durango, Colo., on Wednesday, June 28, 2017, quickly spread into the surrounding forest, creating the Lightner Creek Fire and burning an estimated 100 acres.
Associated Press

DURANGO — The Latest on a wildfire in southwestern Colorado (all times local):

June 29, 6:35 p.m.

A wildfire in southwestern Colorado has grown to about 360 acres (145 hectares), and residents of a half-dozen subdivisions have been told to be ready to evacuate.

The Durango Herald reports some residents who had already left their homes were escorted back in Thursday to retrieve belongings, livestock and pets.

One house has been destroyed and about 170 have been evacuated near the fire outside Durango. A campground was also evacuated.

The fire was reported Wednesday. Firefighter spokesman Scot Davis said investigators had not determined the source because the ground was too hot for them to safely examine the area.

Gov. John Hickenlooper declared a disaster emergency earlier Thursday, allowing the National Guard to help if needed. The state also sent aircraft to help ground crews.

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June 29, 12:40 p.m.

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has declared a disaster emergency to add resources for crews battling a wildfire in the southwest part of the state.

Hickenlooper’s declaration Thursday allows the Colorado National Guard to provide support if needed. The state already has sent aircraft to help ground crews battle the blaze, which has grown to more than 250 acres (100 hectares) since it began Wednesday and forced residents to evacuate 170 homes.

A house fire started the blaze about 2 miles (3.2 kilometers) west of Durango. Firefighters battled a second spot fire nearby that likely was caused by a wind-blown ember from the first blaze.

The Durango Herald reported that two aircraft had to jettison about 1,600 gallons of retardant late Wednesday when ground crews spotted a drone flying over the area. Air operations resumed Thursday.


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