The burned area of hundreds of totally destroyed homes in the Waldo Canyon fire is seen from the air with Pikes Peak in the background in Colorado Springs, Colorado June 28, 2012. Cooler temperatures and lighter winds helped firefighters on Thursday in the battle against the fire, which has destroyed hundreds of homes and forced more than 35,000 people to flee. (Photo : REUTERS/Rick Wilking)
Colorado Springs mayor, Steve Bach, has confirmed that the Waldo Canyon fire has destroyed 346 homes, making it the most destructive fire in Colorado's history.
Since the fire began on June 23rd, 36,000 people were reported to have been evacuated from the cities of Colorado Springs, Manitou Springs and Woodland Park.
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Now, some 20,000 or more people in the area north of the Air Force Academy down through the southwestern region of Douglas County were also given the pre-evacuation announcement.
The fire has burned 18,500 acres of land as of June 28th, and no casualties or injuries have been confirmed so far.
The following are Waldo and High Park Fire Maps. To view a comprehensive map with the major fires accross the state of Colorado click here.
View Waldo Canyon Fire in a larger map
View High Park Fire in a larger map
The City of Colorado Springs has made a call to assemble for residents living in the following streets in order to inform them the status of their homes:
Regal View Road
Hot Springs Court
Mirror Lake Court
Harbor Pines Point
Ashton Park Place
Vantage Vista Drive
Vantage Ridge Court
Van Reen Drive
(Residents should bring identification to gain meeting access. Refreshments will be provided. Counselors will be available.)
President Barack Obama on Friday plans to visit the various locations of destruction in Colorado Springs in order to assess the damage and support the local relief staff.
The White House recently posted readout of President Obama's Calls to Governor John Hickenlooper and Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach containing following message:
The President expressed his concern about the extent of damage to homes in the Colorado Springs area...
The President reiterated his administration's focus, through the US Forest Service as well as the Department of Interior and FEMA, on continuing to bring all resources to bear to assist local responders in Colorado and a number of Western States currently being impacted by fires. Seventeen air tankers have cycled in and out of firefighting action over the last 48 hours across the western states. More than 8,400 personnel, 578 fire engines and 79 helicopters are operating on wildfires around the U.S., with more than half of active federal wildfire-fighting resources are currently staged in Colorado.
5 percent of the fire has been contained as of Thursday, June 28. As far as predictions go, the fire could be under "full control" by mid-July the Forest service added.
Cause of Fire
Although initially the cause of the fire was thought to be lightning, further investigations by local government officials and the FBI may have reason to believe that the fire might have started by an arsonist.
Help & Donations
Donations to those affected by the Waldo Canyon, Flagstaff, High Park and other fires could be directed by contacting the following agencies found in this domain:
Waldo Canyon Fire Time lapse
1st Person Footage of Evacuating Home