Federal officials announced the temporary closure of national parks in five Colorado counties because of “unprecedented and historic fire conditions.”
By Tuesday morning, the wildfires had blazed across a total of 442,000 acres of land in north central Colorado and southern Wyoming. Officials dispatched around 3,000 firefighters and other fire personnel to contain the raging Colorado fires.
Officials temporarily closed forest land in five counties including Boulder, Clear Creek, Gilpin, Jefferson, and Larimer counties. Arapaho & Roosevelt National Forests were included in the closures, according to a Tuesday report from the US Forest Service.
“The new starts and explosive growth of fires throughout the northern Colorado Front Range over the past week, including the Cameron Peak, Cal Wood, and Lefthand Canyon fires, has led to this decision,” said the report.
On Monday night, rescue workers saved multiple people and their pets from San Juan National Forest in southwest Colorado. As the Ice Fire burned more than 300 acres, helicopter crews rescued 23 hikers and three dogs. The Office of Emergency Management in San Juan County, Colorado reported the rescues on their Facebook page.
Wildfires Continue to Wreak Havoc During Historic Fire Season
Deadly wildfires continue to wreak havoc on many Western states. The 2020 fire season has been historic, and it’s not over yet. Normally fire season lasts through the month of October.
To date in 2020, 8.4 million acres have burned due to 46,148 wildfires raging across the nation.
“This is 2.1 million more acres burned than the 10-year average,” the National Interagency Fire Center reported.
So far this year, wildfires across Washington, California, Idaho, and Oregon have taken the lives of 42 people. Furthermore, in Oregon, one person is still missing along with the state’s nine deaths. Additionally, Oregon wildfires have destroyed more than 4,000 homes that have razed 1.2 million acres this season.
In Northern California, red flag warnings remain out of caution for the wildfires. The California wildfires are already historic since they have burned 4.1 million acres of land.
Over the weekend, new wildfires engulfed parts of Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico. Tens of thousands of acres have set on fire already as officials called for further evacuations.