Last updated 9:40PM ET
December 11, 2017
KSUT Regional
KSUT Regional
La Plata Bear Fire Grows to 1250 Acres
(2007-07-09)
(ksut) - HOST LEAD: A wildfire burning southwest of Durango on Fort Lewis Mesa has grown.
KSUT's Victor Locke has this report as of midday. TRT 2:12

VICTOR: The Bear Fire is burning near Bear Canyon in Southwest La Plata County, east of Mesa Verde, in the vicinity of La Plata County Roads 110, 114 and 115.
Eric La Price, a public information officer with the San Juan Public Lands office, had this midday update on the blaze:
LAPRICE: IT IS AT 1250 ACRES AND IT IS ZERO PERCENT CONTAINED AT THIS TIME SO WE HAVE AIRCRAFT AND GROUND CREWS BUSY BUILDING LINE AND DOING DROPS TO TRY AND GET SOME LINE AROUND IT. WE HAVE SIX AIRCRAFT ON THE FIRE NOW, WE HAVE TWO HEAVY TANKERS, TWO SINGLE ENGINE AIR TANKERS, ONE HEAVY HELICOPTER AND ONE LIGHT HELICOPTER. IN ADDITION WE HAVE ABOUT 90-TO-100 FIREFIGHTERS ON THE GROUND WORKING THE FIRE FROM 13 DIFFERENT DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES RANGING FROM THE FOREST SERVICE, BLM, PARK SERVICE, SOME CITY FIRE DEPARTMENTS LIKE FARMINGTON, DURANGO. IT IS BURNING IN PINON AND JUNIPER INTERMIXED WITH SOME GRASSES, SOME SAGE BRUSH AND SOME FARM FIELDS. PROBABLY THE BIGGEST PROBLEM WE'RE DEALING WITH IS SO MUCH OF THE PINON PINE IS DEAD FROM THE DROUGHT AND INSECT ATTACKS OF 2002 AND 2003 THAT FIRE BEHAVIOR RIGHT NOW IS VERY EXTREME BECAUSE OF THAT. ACTUALLY YESTERDAY, WITH SOME OF THE WINDS IN THE AFTERNOON THERE WERE FLAME LENGTHS IN THE PINON JUNIPER THAT REACHED 100 FEET. THERE WAS ONE PRIMARY RESIDENCE THAT WAS DESTROYED ALONG WITH TWO OUT BUILDINGS ON THE SAME PROPERTY. THERE WERE NO INJURIES ASSOCIATED WITH IT, NOBODY WAS HOME AT THE TIME, THERE ACTUALLY HAVE BEEN NO EVACUATIONS YET. THERE WERE SOME NOTIFICATIONS, THERE WERE TEN NOTIFICATIONS, TEN DIFFERENT RESIDENCES NOTIFIED ABOUT THE FIRE AND THE OPTION WAS LEFT UP TO THEM WHETHER TO STAY OR REMAIN BUT THERE WERE NO ACTUAL EVACUATIONS.
VICTOR: The Red Cross of Southwest Colorado has established a shelter at Fort Lewis Mesa Elementary School, where people who live in the area should check in, for needed assistance.
From KSUT, Four Corner's Public Radio, I'm Victor Locke.
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