A 17-acre wildfire in Monte Vista destroyed Homes and other Structures
About 17 acres of land were burned by a wildfire in Monte Vista Wednesday afternoon, according to local officials.
In the southern Colorado city of Monte Vista, police chief George Dingfelder says it’s not yet known how many buildings have been destroyed by the blaze. Reports of injuries or missing people have not surfaced at this time.
As a result of the fire, some 20 to 30 residences are still under mandatory evacuation orders. An initial evacuation zone of about 100 homes was lifted on Wednesday afternoon, allowing some of those displaced residents to return to their homes.
The Ski Hi Complex at 2235 Sherman Avenue was designated as an evacuation point. Fire officials have set up an emergency shelter at the Nazarene church at 228 Madison Street.
First reports of a fire at Monte Vista’s north end came in about 12:15pm on Sunday. According to Dingfelder, some structures went up in flames practically immediately.
A helicopter was dropping water on the blaze when it was reported to be making strong progress by the Costilla County Office of Emergency Management at 3:30 pm.
At a news conference at 6 p.m., officials stated that the fire had been put out, but smoke could still be seen coming from the perimeter.
Colorado’s Division of Fire Prevention and Control Deputy Chief Paul Duarte says the blaze is in much better shape. “A couple of hours ago, we had a little bit of break in the wind, so we were able to get that forward progress stopped.”
The cause of the fire is being investigated.
On Wednesday, the eastern part of Rio Grande County, including Monte Vista, received a Red Flag warning.
As of 9 a.m., winds from the southwest were gusting between 20 and 35 mph, with relative humidity dropping as low as 12 percent at the meteorological station just north of Monte Vista. Around 2 p.m., the temperature reached 66 degrees.