Dozens of wildfires were burning in hot, dry conditions in the western United States, including lightning blazing toward the largest city in northern Arizona.
Smoke covered the mountain town of Flagstaff on Monday. The surrounding national forest announced a complete closure, which will begin later this week. The first case since 2006.
The intense heat was expected to subside in the coming days, which has further hampered firefighting. However, the National Weather Service said it could lead to uncertainty for firefighters.
“There is a good chance of moisture and scattered rains,” said meteorologist Andrew Taylor. “Lightning is not a good thing.”
In California, firefighters were still struggling to contain a large forest fire in the rugged coastal mountains south of Big Sur, forcing them to evacuate a nearby Buddhist monastery.
Lightning strikes in New Mexico are burning in the southern part of the state, where much of the Gila Desert remains closed, and firefighters are closely monitoring the Gila Cliff National Monument.
To date, more land has burned throughout Arizona. While people are to blame for the vast majority of forest fires, lightning struck 80 km / 31 miles west of Sedona, heading for the Flagstaff, known as the Raphael Fire.
In order to control the fire in the group, juniper, lead և ponderose pine, the management of the high-ranking group was instructed to control.
“Some of the campers have already been evacuated, and villagers have been told they should be ready to evacuate by giving a moment’s notice,” said Jon on Paxton, Coconino County Sheriff’s Office spokesman.
Due to the Raphael Fire, 1-40 south, west of I-17, including University Heights, Kachina Village, Forest Highlands, Payne Del, and Mount Wood Road are now in SET status. Start preparing for a possible GAC order from EVACUATE.
THIS IS NOT A FALL OF EVAK.
– Coconino County (@CononinoCounty) June 21, 2021
If the fire continues to push north-east, hundreds of people in Flagstaff, a college town about two hours north of Phoenix, could also be affected, Paxton said.
Firefighters were plotting to starve Rafael Fire as it was moving through rough terrain, valleys and deserts. As of Monday, it was running along the interstate 40 along the lines of the Kokonino-Javapa region.
Located at 7,283 square kilometers / 2,812 square miles, the Coconino National Forest, a popular camping, hiking, sailing and fishing area, was cut off on Wednesday due to fears that it would not have enough resources to respond to future forest fires.
The forest has been partially closed in recent years due to the risk of fire.
“We have limited resources, we are being evacuated right now,” said Forest spokesman Brady Smith.
Arizona is at the highest level of forest fire preparedness. A large forest fire broke out near Superior on Monday, about 97 km (60 miles) west of Phoenix. The 730-square-kilometer (282-square-mile) fire was caused by humans.
Pine բնակ Residents near small strawberry communities continue to be evacuated due to another forest fire, which jumped to the tops of the hill and the flames bounced forward, carried by the wind. Some local roads have also been closed.
Fire brigades still have to contain some of the forest fire environment. The lightning strike on Monday was estimated at 132 square kilometers (51 miles) and is managed by a high-quality team.
Several wildfires were burning in dry gold in Utah. The largest small business town in southern Utah was forced to evacuate over the weekend. But homeowners were allowed to return as the blockade reached 50 percent,