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Sears Fire grows to 9,200 acres, destroys several homes, buildings

(InciWeb Photo)

PHOENIX – Fire crews battling the Sears Fire northeast of the Valley are still working to gain control on the blaze.

The Sears Fire, which is burning in the Tonto National Forest, has grown to 9,200 acres and 0% contained, according to officials on Sunday. The fire had consumed 6,800 acres as of Saturday.

Fire crews were able to access the area around Sears Kay Ranch to conduct damage assessments. So far, three residences, five outbuildings and several vehicles have been destroyed by the fire.

Officials continue to construct fire lines while air tankers and helicopters conduct targeted drops with fire retardant and water to suppress the blaze.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Officials implemented several closures in the area over the weekend, including Bartlett Dam Road, Seven Springs Road, Horseshoe Lake, Bartlett Lake and Seven Springs recreation sites. The closures are in effect until further notice.

Residents who are concerned should contact their local sheriff’s office to sign up for alerts and evacuation notifications, according to authorities.

Over 800,000 acres have been destroyed by wildfires in Arizona this year. Wildfire activity usually burns out by July because of seasonal monsoon rainfall, but those storms have largely failed to materialize.

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