Colorado firefighters brace for windy, warm weather along Front Range
April 5, 2011
FORT COLLINS, Colo. (AP) – Fire managers are warning residents near a northern Colorado wildfire that has destroyed about 15 homes to stay on alert as the winds pick up in the area.
Snow, colder weather and multiple drops of water by helicopters helped crews contain roughly 15 percent of the 5-square-mile fire west of Fort Collins Monday. But firefighters are bracing for winder, warmer weather Tuesday. A red-flag warning, signaling high fire danger, is in effect until Tuesday night along the Front Range foothills as well as in southern Colorado.
The blaze exploded overnight Saturday when winds reached 50 mph and higher. More than 300 homes were temporarily evacuated.
Gov. John Hickenlooper issued a disaster declaration Monday to authorize $1.7 million in state aid to help cover firefighting costs.