- The authorities ordered the evacuation of 19,400 people due to a wildfire in Colorado.
- The fire hit the same area last year, destroying 1,000 homes.
- The authorities fear that the containment of the flames will last several days.
Authorities in Colorado issued an evacuation order on Saturday for nearly 19,400 people where the blaze was spreading rapidly in an area of steep slopes south of the college town of Boulder and near the spot where the fire consumed more than 1,000 homes last year.
The fire was fanned by high winds during the day and is now 122 acres (49 hectares) uncontained, Boulder Fire-Rescue Department spokeswoman Marya Washburn said, according to The Associated Press.
Authorities made a decision about the fire
“The state has deployed two firefighting aircraft, including a single-engine tanker truck and a type 2 helicopter, and stands ready to assist with the response,” Governor Jared Polis said in a statement. “We will continue to monitor this evolving situation,” the governor added.
Boulder Office of Emergency Management staff said an overnight shelter was opened after evacuation orders covered 8,000 homes and 7,000 structures. Damage to structures has not been reported.
Authorities fear the worst for the next few days
Winds and temperatures have decreased, according to Washburn. Authorities expect the fight against the flames to last several days due to the large amount of combustible material of plant origin, explained Brian Oliver, the division chief of the Boulder Fire and Rescue Department.
The fire is in an area where flames swept through about 1,000 homes last year in Boulder County and suburban Superior and Louisville. In an email, the Superior authorities indicated that for now the community is not at risk.
What caused the huge fire?
Saturday’s fire started around 2 p.m. and consumed a protected forest area near the Table Mesa neighborhood and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), police said on Twitter. Authorities call the fire the NCAR fire and still don’t know what caused it, Washburn said.
Eldorado Canyon State Park was closed and authorities have ordered those currently hiking or climbing to leave the area. Police from the University of Colorado Boulder campus have evacuated the south facility, and police have blocked traffic on westbound roads near the flames. Filed under: Colorado wildfire.
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