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12 Apr 2020 | 11:55 AM UTC

US: Officials issue evacuation orders as wildfire burns in Otero county (Colorado state) April 12

Officials issue evacuation orders as a wildfire burns over 1000 acres at Bent's Old Fort in Otero county (Colorado state) on April 12; take necessary precautions

environment
transportation
USA

Event

As of Sunday, April 12, an ongoing wildfire at Bent's Old Fort in Otero county (Colorado state) has burned over 1000 acres as emergency services attempt to control the blaze. The wildfire began at approximately 17:30 (local time) on Saturday, April 11, at Bent's Old Fort in the southeastern region of the state. As a result of the wildfire, local authorities promptly closed Highway 194, east of La Junta municipality. Residents living near Bent and Otero counties have been ordered to evacuate. As of April 12, weather conditions are very conducive to rapid fire spread. The fire is reported to be 20% contained and has crossed over into Bent County. The Otero County Sheriff's office reported that almost all fire units from southeast Colorado are responding. No injuries have been reported as of Sunday morning.

Transportation disruptions are expected in the affected area and further evacuation orders are possible over the near term.

Advice

Individuals in the affected area are advised to monitor developments to the situation, adhere to instructions issued by local authorities (e.g. evacuation notices, road closures), and exercise caution when travelling near the wildfire. Children and those with respiratory illness are advised to limit outdoor activity.