ST LOUIS (LALATE) – The Colorado Springs Wildfires map enlarged Thursday as new destruction was engulfed by the Waldo Canyon Fire. Officials in updating the latest Colorado Springs Wildfires map tell news Friday that one person is dead and 346 homes have been lost in the massive Waldo Canyon Fire. A blaze that erupted slowly on the weekend made massive advances midweek. But on Thursday, officials warned news that damage assessments of burn areas could reveal at least two hundred homes had been lost. Late yesterday, officials told news that the number is now approaching thirty-hundred fifty residences destroyed.
Officials battling the Colorado Springs wildfires released horrific pictures today demonstrating the erratic path of destruction of the Waldo Canyon Fire. Entire blocks of homes were destroyed in some pictures. In other photos, the blaze jumped sporadically from home to home, saving some residences in a city block but not others.
The fire today is at fifteen percent containment. The number of acres burned is now approaching seventeen thousand. And the number of personnel has been increased, officials tell news, to nearly one thousand two hundred firefighters. But the biggest progress against the Waldo Canyon Fire is expected to be reached today June 29, 2012.
Incident Commander Rich Harvey told news Friday of new evacuations map for the Waldo Canyon Fire. At 8 pm last night, residents were allowed back into their homes located southeast of Rockrimmon. Homeowners were allowed back to their houses in Golden Hills and Tammaron subdivisions (southeast of Woodmen Rd./Rockrimmon Blvd. to S. Rockrimmon), Pine Cliff, and Kissing Camels last night. Officials also told news that residents were allowed back in the subdivisions of Holland Park, Pleasant Valley and apartments at Garden of the Gods Rd. near Thirtieth Street.
Meantime, Colorado Springs Mayor Bach advised news that the effort to fight this fire is far from over. “This community is going to mount an unprecedented response to thisâ¦to bring every possible resource available.â Bach told news that improved weather conditions today could result in a major improvements toward containment.
The news came as two persons were accused of burglarizing evacuated homes Thursday. Belinda Yates and Shane Garrett were arrested Thursday for suspicion of second degree burglary, theft, and various other charges after they allegedly slipped into evacuated areas.
The Colorado Bureau of Investigation tells news that the two were found in Monument. They are accused of sneaking pass police lines in the Waldo Canyon Fire and breaking into homes of evacuees. CBI Director Ron Sloan called the allegations shocking for victims already suffering “heartbreak” for being “forced to evacuate their homes” only to find their residences broken into.
Thursday began with Air Force Academy officials moving five hundred fifty cadets off the Academy. By Thursday morning, Bach told news that damage assessment of homes was still ongoing. Bach said that residents could expect the number of homes destroyed to be in the “hundreds”.
But on Friday, officials told news that a lack of Red Flag weather conditions could result in improved containment of the fire. Firefighters tell news that improved weather conditions are enabling them to secure “the subdivision of Cedar Heights and eliminate the potential of fire from destroyed structures involving other structures”. New management points are being deployed for the communities of Woodland Park, Monument and Manitou Springs today.
Mapping of the fire’s advance since June 23 shows its steady path northward on Sunday, westward on Monday. But on Tuesday, the fire made its biggest advance, moving northward and easterly. Officials revealed to news Thursday that containment lines held since Wednesday except for a northeast tip and a southwestern leg. For the latest fire map, see below or click HERE to enlarge the below map. And for another fire map from Inciweb, click HERE .
Harvey tells news that the effort against the blaze was successful on Thursday and will be better Friday. “Yesterday was a good day, and firefighters have made progress. Now we’re going to go after it aggressively.”Â For this and other news updates about the Colorado Springs Waldo Canyon Fire, click HERE.
View Waldo Canyon Fire in a larger map