Colorado Wildfire Forces Evacuation Orders for 19,000 People

BOULDER, Colo. — Authorities issued an evacuation order for 19,400 people Saturday near a fast-moving Colorado wildfire in rolling hills south of the college town of Boulder, not far from the site of a destructive 2021 blaze that leveled more than 1,000 homes.

Marya Washburn, Boulder Fire-Rescue spokeswoman for Marya said that the wildfire had been fueled earlier in day by wind and had reached 122 acres (49 ha) without any containment. According to the Boulder Office of Emergency Management, an overnight shelter was established after evacuation orders were issued for approximately 8,000 and 7,000 homes. No structures had been damaged.

Washburn stated that temperatures and winds have slowed down. Boulder Fire-Rescue Wildland Division Chief Brian Oliver said that officials are expected to deal with the fire over several days, due to heavy fuels.

It is located in the area of a fire that decimated 1,000 homes in Boulder County’s unincorporated subdivisions, Superior, Louisville and Louisville. In an email, Superior officials informed residents that the fire was not a concern for them.

The 2021 blaze burned Alicia Miller’s home, where she could see smoke from Saturday’s fire rising in the background. She posted a photo on TwitterThe scientists referred to climate change as the reason for the U.S. West becoming warmer and dryer over the past 30 year. They predict the extreme weather and destructive wildfires will only get worse.

Miller claimed that her neighbor helped her flee along with Craig, her three adult sons, and their two dogs, Ginger, and Chloe. She said the hardest losses from the blaze were things they didn’t look at much, like baby shoes, family pictures and letters from her grandmother.

“I feel exhausted by all of this, and I just feel like enough as far as these fires and disasters,” she said. She cited a Texas wildfire which killed a deputy and left many homes destroyed. “ … So I’m standing there and it’s just kind of a repeat.”

Saturday’s fire started around 2 p.m. and burned protected wildland near the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder police said. Washburn said that the NCAR fire has been called by authorities and is still under investigation.


This report was contributed by Damian Dovarganes, Associated Press photographer

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