The Hewlett fire in Colorado has grown to over 7,000 acres, and is reportedly only 5% contained, according to the latest updates on the fast-moving wildfire.
“Governor John Hickenlooper has declared a disaster emergency for the Hewlett Fire burning northwest of Fort Collins. The Executive Order makes available $3 million from the state’s Disaster Emergency Fund to help pay for fire suppression. The Governor has also activated Colorado National Guard resources to help the Forest Service fight the fire.”
Authorities reportedly ordered the evacuation of 80 homes in and around Poudre Canyon on Thursday. According to Huffington Post, 69 of those homes’ residents were allowed to return in the evening, however they have been placed on alert, in case they need to leave again.
Over 400 firefighters are on the scene already, and more will be arriving soon. Resident John Hasler stated on Thursday that he does not plan to leave his home. He stated that this is the second time in ten years he has been asked to evacuate because of a fire. He said
“I was more worried when that (2004) fire was coming through here. It had already burned around 10,000 acres and destroyed a home and was moving with some force when it was heading here.”
The fire is only 5 percent contained, and authorities are working to slow its progress before it destroys more homes. They are expecting Friday to be what they call an “active” day for the fire, as it is fueled by hot temperatures and winds.
The Coloradoan reports that Greg Heule, a fire spokesman, stated:
“We’re expecting to see more aggressive fire behavior today. Yesterday was a good day. We accomplished a lot yesterday. And what we accomplished yesterday is going to help us with the fire today.”
The Hewlett fire is burning about 80 miles northwest of Denver. Smoke from the blaze has drifted almost 45 miles south.