PUEBLO COUNTY, CO — As of Monday evening, the Saint Charles Fire now sits at 492 acres in size but is now 99% contained according to the Rye Fire Protection District. Crews said that the recent snowy conditions have allowed for crews to get near full containment on the fire.
Fire managers do believe temperatures could reach back up to 50 degrees in the area and smoke could become visible again as the heat climbs. The number of personnel assigned to the fire will begin to be reduced based on the fire's current activity.
The Colorado Springs Fire Department was one of the many crews responding to the fire that has been a challenge to contain due to the difficult terrain firefighters face. The CSFD says a brush truck and three crew members have been deployed to assist in the fight.
Firefighting resources including hand crews, engine crews, heavy equipment, helicopters, and airplanes continue to work towards increasing containment on the fire in far western Pueblo County near the Custer County line.
As heavy resources were on this fire, the Pueblo County Sheriff's Office issued a total burn ban for the county. No burning of any kind is allowed until further notice.
The Pueblo County Sheriff's Office has partnered with the United States Forest Service, to launch a text message service that will provide you updates on the fire. All you have to do to join is text "SaintCharlesFire" to 77295.
Due to conditions from recent snow by the Saint Charles Fire, pre-evacuation orders have been lifted according to the Custer County Sheriff's Office.
Some National Forest land is closed because of the fire. This map shows the area where closures are in effect.
The fire was first reported on Saturday, October 14. There were two helicopters and an air tanker assigned to the fire. Crews determined the cause of the fire to be a lightning strike.
The fire is burning on United States Forest Service (USFS) land significantly northwest of the Town of Rye.
According to the Forest Service, the fire is difficult to access as it sits on the slope of a mountain.
According to the National Park Service, in the midst of a wildland fire, there are three types of helicopters used to help put it out:
- Type 1 helicopters can carry up to 700 gallons of water,
- Type 2 helicopters can carry up to 300 gallons of water and
- Type 3 helicopters can carry up to 100 gallons of water.
This is a developing story and will be updated as we learn more.
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