Black Forest Fire At 45 Percent Containment
The tone of Saturday's news conference turned from giving initial numbers of structures burned to addressing the concerns of the evacuees.
El Paso county Sheriff Terrry Maketa said no further structures had been lost to the fire, and no ground was lost on Friday night. The total homes lost to the fire remains 473 that are total losses and 17 partial losses.
Crews will be “hot spotting” today to check three times with different crews in a grid pattern to make sure no further small fires are in each area before they let evacuees back in.
Maketa said there was no increase in reported burglaries and apologized to the evacuees for incorrect information on the status of their homes, but stressed that they are “trying the best they can to provide accurate information.”
Mandatory evacuations have been downgraded in areas. You can check the evacuation notices here.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
At a press conference Friday El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa said there hadn’t been any lightning in the area when the fire first stared, but later in the day said there was an unconfirmed report of lightning on Tuesday afternoon. Maketa was cautiously optimistic on the firefighting efforts, you can hear his comments below.
Five days after the most destructive fire in Colorado history started the totals are jarring. The fire has claimed two lives and charred over 15,700 acres.
Want to know what it’s like to fight a wildfire? Check out this video posted by the AP via the Air Force Academy, it shows just what it's like lugging a hose and confronting the flames.