Skip to comments.A 'shocking' 360 homes 'complete losses' as fight resumes in Black Forest fire (Colorado)
Posted on 06/13/2013 9:26:09 AM PDT by CedarDave
El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa says at least 360 homes are complete losses -- numbers he calls "shocking" -- and another 14 are damaged as firefighters prepare to face another "red flag" day fighting the Black Forest fire.
The destruction of homes ranks the Black Forest fire as the worst wildfire in Colorado history, surpassing the 347 homes destroyed by the Waldo Canyon fire last June in the Mountain Shadows neighborhood of Colorado Springs.
It also ranks atop the list for most forced evacuations. Maketa said 38,000 people have been forced from their homes by the Black Forest fire, again exceeding the 32,000 evacuated from Colorado Springs during the Waldo Canyon fire.
Maketa has no update on a missing person report filed Wednesday. Attempts to investigate the report are being hampered by intense fire.
"I have not heard of a report of injuries and no information on fatalities at this time," Maketa said.
As for today, the fire remains completely out of control and likely will as long as winds gusting to 40 mph whip it every direction, he said.
"We're not at a point where we can declare containment," Maketa said.
He said the prospect of winds in the 30 mph range with gusts to 35 mph today make prospects for containment doubtful, he said.
The goal today will be to stop its spread to the west and northwest where affluent Colorado Springs neighborhoods and the communities of Woodmoor and Monument sit.
"Those are going to be the priorities," he said.
(Excerpt) Read more at gazette.com ...
LIVE UPDATES: A 'shocking' 360 homes 'complete losses' as fight resumes in Black Forest fire north of Colorado
SpringsPictures, updates, Twitter at the link
If you had less than an hour to get all of your irreplaceable possessions loaded up and out of the house, what would you take? Photographs, guns, ammo, computers, personal documents. What else?
Guns and my motorcycles.
Guns and ammo because you’d be fighting the insurance company over them. Unless you list them separately (and pay), they will deny the claim.
Life is always better with clean underwear ans socks. Prescription medicine. The kids.
From an earlier link:
10:40 p.m. The Elbert County Sheriff's Office reports a Noah's Ark at their fairgrounds.
"Elbert County Fairgrounds remains open with space for evacuees and animals. Total count of animals currently at the Fairgrounds is as follows: 28 chickens; 216 horses, 5 drafts/14 foals; 5 cows, 2 calves; 27 Alpacas; 14 dogs; 25 cats; 22 goats; 1 ducks; 4 burros; 2 guinea pigs; 3 sheep; 19 miniature horses; 19 mules; 8 lamas; 3 stallions; 1 yak."
As of Wednesday night there were also 833 evacuated residents at the Elbert County Fairgrounds.
My daughters baby blanket, favorite doll, meds, and our picture’s negatives, important paper box (titles, will, insurance information etc), a keepsake my motherIL gave to my husband before she died, and a necklace my Mom gave me....then I walked out the door.
It is amazing when you stand in the living room looking at all the stuff and realize nothing really matters if your family is safe.
Local live TV coverage:
If Gov. Chicken****er had told the enviro whacko wilderness types to go away, and instituted reasoned forest management practices, the fuel load would be far less.
Environmentalism is a socio-political movement with a flavor of science. Forestry is a science. Differences are important.
Oh, make sure the ‘forestry’ based management plan is not infected with “enviro” or “wilderness” premises. Otherwise, it is just another version of environmentalism.
pets would be at the head of the list
Wonder how much dead trees and underbrush were there to keep the fires going so hot.
It used to be that forests had dead timber cleared out but then the enviros threw a snit so it was stopped in some areas.
If this was the case, wonder how many of the former home owners feel about making the enviros happy.
What you say is true, but here the fire started in forest areas where homes have been built. You have homes constructed in and under pines 100 to 200 feet high. In areas surrounding the homes you have spindly pine thickets that have not been thinned, mostly the responsibility of the landowner. Combined with forest litter, drought conditions, drying winds and high temperatures, it was literally a tinderbox awaiting ignition.
As one of the evacuated, I am sure this fire will get much worse, before all is said and done. If the winds pick up today like yesterday easily another 50 homes, if the wind blows west and jumps CO83 the numbers will be staggering.
From what I understand, this was the issue last year.
Good question. DaveyB, you know?
El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa also stated there are 79 homes they haven’t been able to check on and don’t know their status because of the intensity of the fire.
Also, it’s 0% contained.
I remember last year seeing pictures of a whole lot of the West decimated by the pine beetle turning whole forests brown. This was bound to happen.
360 homes is a lot of homes particularly in rural areas.
Pre-evacuation ordered for GlenEagle area.
My sister is north side of CS My niece and her husbands families are in Monument. So sad.
The US has been much less aggressive in harvesting this dead timber on its Federal and state lands. This is primarily because of government bureaucracy's and injunctions filed by environmental groups in court to delay timber sales. The result is millions of acres of dead standing timber just waiting for the next lightning strike or carelessly thrown match.
Watching KOAA live. In the past five minutes it has just exploded east of highway 83.
My nieces in laws have been evacuated. They are off Higby Road & Colonial Park in Monument. They are both retired military, he’s still working.
Ugh. Best of luck and prayers up. Keep us updated as you can.
LIVE UPDATES: 11:29 a.m.: Black Forest fire by the numbers . . .
Containment: 0 percent
Deaths / injuries: None reported
Acres burned: 15,000
Homes burned: 360 destroyed / 14 damaged
People evacuated: 38,000 people
Homes evacuated: 13,000
Evacuation area: 55 square miles.
Firefighters on scene: 500 estimated
Wife and Son were at Boy Scout Camp at Elbert this time last year. Glad they aren’t there this year.
Beautiful Country up there. Hopefully some rain is on the way.
The black forest has not been affected by beetle kill.
Gee, I didn’t realize this was EAST of I-25, not west in the mountains as I presumed. And 0 percent contained? What are they waiting on?
Rain and no more Red Flag conditions would be a start. They can’t do much otherwise. :-(
With 30 mph winds and very low humidity, they are waiting on God. The firefighters are doing all that is humanly possible.
Thank you for the map. Our family was in Colorado Springs just this past weekend, staying off Interquest Parkway— right in what is now the “voluntary evacuation zone”.
I did note that the grass was pretty dry in the area. There were few trees and buildings in the area. The buildings all look brand new. There is a community college in the “zone”, but I don’t know whether summer school is in session.
Something nobody has pointed out - this is a very affluent area with lots of very large and expensive homes. Local TV had several residents state they had been through this before - in California.
The deadfall and carpet of pine needles is very deep. Population density increases to the north and east.
I am 60 miles north of Black forest. Last night the smoke was reducing visibility in my ‘hood for a few hours.
Not every home/structure within the perimeter area has been burned.
Live pictures from KOAA showing nearby small trees bowed from the wind (20 mph and increasing) and large, increasingly intense plumes of black smoke. Red flag weather conditions posted.
Pets? What about WIFE?
Huh. So that’s why the Range is covered with thick smoke. *Cough*
Mandatory evacuation area expanded:
1:41 p.m. Mandatory Evacuation announced for northern Colorado Springs — Northern Boundary: North Gate and Old North Gate Road - Southern Boundary: Flying Horse Club Drive (to include homes south of Flying Horse Club Drive on Barossa Valley Road and Veneto Way)/Vine Cliff Heights/Equinox Drive/Serenity Peak Drive - Eastern Boundary: Highway 83 - Western Boundary: Voyager Parkway
Sheriff briefing and update at 2 p.m.
Live stream shows DC-10 slurry bomber dropping retardant.
Another expansion of the mandatory evacuation area:
1:48 p.m.From CSPD via Twitter: “New mandatory evac area: Sunhills Dr & Granby Rd north to Baptist Rd & south to Old North Gate. Move west, avoid 83”
1:44 p.m. Again: Mandatory Evacuation announced for nothern Colorado Springs — Northern Boundary: North Gate and Old North Gate Road - Southern Boundary: Flying Horse Club Drive (to include homes south of Flying Horse Club Drive on Barossa Valley Road and Veneto Way)/Vine Cliff Heights/Equinox Drive/Serenity Peak Drive - Eastern Boundary: Highway 83 - Western Boundary: Voyager ParkwayThis is the first mandatory evacuation within the city of Colorado Springs. Mandatory evacuation means leave your home now and head to safety.As hundreds of northern Colorado Springs residents leave their home here’s some shelter information:
Residents who cannot stay with family or friends outside the evacuation area, go to one of the shelters listed below:
Palmer Ridge High School- 19255 Monument Hill Rd, Monument
Small Animal Shelters:
Powers Pet Emergency- Powers and Stetson Hills Offering small animal assistance, medical & kennel. Ph (719) 473-0482
Falcon Animal Hospital- Phone (719) 495-1457, is now accepting dogs and cats. Address: 860 Swing Line Road. Palmer Ridge High School 19255 Monument Hill Road Monument, CO 80132 Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region 610 Abbot Lane Colorado Springs, CO 80905
If you are NOT staying with your pets at the Palmer Ridge High School shelter, you must bring your animals to Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region at 610 Abbot Lane. The Palmer Ridge High School shelter is set up for owners staying with their pets only.
From new dots on the map behind the link, it appears that the fire is jumping way to the east. No surprise, because it’s breezy here on the Range way to the west. Generally southwest wind but probably different direction from the local wind direction in the Springs (usually more north or south oriented there).
The wind is from the southeast and the fire is moving to the west and northwest. The dots on the map are just the assessment as of very early this morning and are not definitive of current conditions.
Moving to the west and northwest? It’s going to be an expensive one then. The haze way to the northwest is pretty thick. Caution to those with conditions who head up 9 from the Springs to the resorts, which I’m sure many already have. Temperature/level inversions overnight saturating ski towns with smoke causes respiratory inflammations in the mornings.
Not near any ski area, BTW, and time to do a couple of outside chores.
From Colorado State Patrol on Interstate 25 traffic: LEFT lane for THROUGH traffic -RIGHT lane for EVACUATING residents, LAW ENFORCEMENT/FIRST RESPONDERS
2:52 p.m. New evacuations in northern Colorado Springs bring the total number of evacuees to 41,000.
2:44 p.m. Colorado State Patrol advising drivers headed to denver to take Highway 24 to I-70 then head west.
2:41 p.m. Firefighters on radio say Black Forest fire flaring up at Shoup and Falcon. Fire behavior increasing as winds are picking up.
2:36 p.m. Traffic nightmare in northern Colorado Springs. If you don’t need to be there, leave. Reporters, officials say it’s a parking lot through much of the area north of Woodmen Road.
For travel North on I25 CSP now recommends you go via Hwy 24 East out to Limon and then West to Denver.
Nearly a 200mi detour