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Fires break out in southwestern La Plata County

Fire crews responded to 12 fires on Friday and were working on nine fires on Saturday in southwestern La Plata County. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald file)
Smoke visible from Highway 140

Eighteen fires broke out Friday on the Southern Ute Indian Reservation. The North Cinder Butte Area Fires are located throughout the west side of the reservation in the southwestern corner of La Plata County, according to news releases by the Durango Interagency Coordinating Group and the Southern Ute Indian Tribe.

Fire crews responded to 12 fires on Friday and were working on nine fires on Saturday, said DICG public information officer Scot Davis in an Interview with The Durango Herald. The fires are a result of a recent lightning storm.

“It’s a lot of single tree fires,“ he said. ”We’re doing aerial recon right now with the helitack helicopters to get a full picture of what’s going on out there.”

The Bureau of Indian Affairs, Southern Ute Agency Fire Management and Los Pinos Fire Protection District, Fort Lewis Mesa and Colorado State helicopters have responded. Type II IA Crew, four engines and air support have been ordered.

Smoke is visible from the Colorado Highway 140 corridor. People should avoid County Road 136 and the west end of County Road 100. Smoke will be visible to the local communities.

Stage 1 fire restrictions were enacted for Southern Ute Indian Reservation on Wednesday and will remain in effect until conditions improve. These restrictions prohibit open burning, agricultural burning, campfires and fireworks.

ngonzales@durangoherald.com

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