More Wildfire Evacuations Around Arizona’s Mount Lemmon

Bighorn Fire continues to grow



PHOENIX (AP) — Sheriff’s deputies went door to door evacuating more residents Thursday from the Santa Catalina Mountains overlooking Tucson as a wildfire, one of several in Arizona, continued to grow.

The Bighorn Fire’s evacuation area on Mount Lemmon was expanded to include Willow Canyon, the Pima County Sheriff’s Department said.

It wasn’t immediately known how many homes were affected. Many residences on Mount Lemmon are summer cabins.

Fire officials said Thursday the fire had reached the north side of Mount Lemmon and also was to expected to push through a gap several miles to the north.

Crews were conducting burnouts to deprive the fire of fuel and improving containment lines in several areas to protect Mount Lemmon and the communities of Oracle and San Manuel.

The Bighorn Fire covered 48 square miles (121 square kilometers) as of Thursday evening with containment remaining around 40% of its perimeter.

Two other major fires continued to grow in in the Kaibab National Forest north of the Grand Canyon in northern Arizona and in east-central Arizona in the Tonto National Forest northeast of metro Phoenix.

The fire 30 miles (48 kilometers) southeast of Fredonia was 86 square miles (223 square kilometers) and 3% contained Thursday. The fire in the Tonto National Forest was 180 square miles (466 square kilometers) and 5% contained.

All three fires have caused evacuation of rural communities and partial or full closures of several highways.

No structures have been reported damaged.

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