(COLORADO SPRINGS) — A “rapidly moving” brush fire has destroyed at least eight homes in the Black Forest area north of Colorado Springs, officials said Tuesday night.
The blaze, along with two other large fires in the state, is burning in record heat and dry, windy conditions.
“Weather is not working with us right now,” said El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa.
More than 2,500 mandatory evacuation notices — roughly equivalent to the number of homes — have been sent out, and about 383 more homes are under voluntary evacuation orders, Sheriff Maketa said.
The fire is growing, but Maketa said officials do not yet know how much terrain the fire has charred.
The Black Forest blaze is now considered a Type I incident, the most serious. Federal commanders have now taken over responsibility fighting the fire.
Red flag fire weather warnings have been in effect across most of Colorado and in five other western states on Tuesday.
Two other large fires are burning in Colorado, one in Rocky Mountain National Park. Another blaze near Canon City has torched about 300 acres and destroyed three structures, officials said.
The Red Cross has also set up shelters to help care for evacuees.
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