Fire in southwestern Colorado grows to 22131 acres

Durango fire updates: How many people have been evacuated? What causes a wildfire?

Durango fire updates: How many people have been evacuated? What causes a wildfire?

An order was issued to 675 residences at 9:45 a.m., including Purgatory/Durango Mountain Resort, Lake Purgatory, Silver Pick Lodge, Cascade Village, Mill Creek and all residences on both sides of U.S. Highway 550 between mile markers 46.5 to 53.1.

How many people have been evacuated?

Along with new acreage estimates, officials said the 416 Fire is expected to grow at a rate of.5 to.75 miles per hour due to gusty winds.

For up-to-date information on evacuation status, you are asked to call the La Plata County Emergency Operations Center at (970) 385-8700.

The fire had burned about 9,000 acres (3,640 hectares) by early on Saturday, according to an aerial survey.

As of Sunday afternoon, Megan Graham, spokeswoman with La Plata County, said the total number of evacuations stands at 2,156, and 373 homes and businesses are under pre-evacuation notice. The fire's southwest flank has now moved into North Buck Creek and the Buck Creek drainage.

Firefighters issued the evacuation of almost 500 homes in the town of Hermosa Thursday.as the 416 fire continues to burn in the nearby city of Durango. Firefighters on the ground and in the air were still battling the blaze.

"Structure protection is in place for the entire fire area", read a news release from the Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team.

Paul Boyer of Durango Colo. levels his camera for a shot of the plume as it rises from the wildfire near Hermosa Colo. (Jerry McBride  The Durango Herald

Firefighters have kept the Colorado fire to the west of Highway 550 and away from structures, county commissioners in La Plata County, Colorado, said in a Saturday Facebook post.

No structures have been lost.

Slurry was used in an attempt to slow the fire in an attempt to battle the blaze, after several days without it.

Along with the fixed wing aircraft, four Type I helicopters, two Type II helicopters and two Type III helicopters will fight the fire from the air. The fire in this area is behaving as predicted, according to fire authorities.

Crews on the east side of the fire are looking for hot spots and are mopping up the area. This consists of attending meetings, observing hand crews and transferring plans.

The winds won't be as strong as Thursday, but it will be breezy.

Elsewhere, the National Weather Service issued a dense smoke weather warning for Highway 550 corridor from Molas Pass through Durango and down to the New Mexico state line, as well as the Highway 160 corridor between Hesperus and Bayfield, extending east past Pagosa Springs. In April, La Plata County suffered "exceptional drought" conditions, with fuels such as grass, brush and trees in La Plata helping to produce "explosive fire growth and behavior".


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