With crews getting control of Arizona wildfire, authorities lift evacuation
PHOENIX – Firefighters have the upper hand on the Horse Fire south of Prescott as containment increased from 63% to 74%, authorities said on Sunday morning.
The fire, which has consumed 9,537 total acres of Prescott National Forest land, has not grown since Saturday, fire officials say.
Evacuation orders were lifted for the Crown King community Friday afternoon after a night of minimal growth on the blaze, Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office said.
No structures have been damaged, but officials issued an evacuation order for Crown King last week when the fire was spreading.
Residents can return home through a checkpoint in Cleator.
Forest Service closures will remain in effect, and roadblocks will be maintained.
Crews have secured the fire’s western perimeter and extinguished all heat sources on the southern tip and southeastern area.
With the threat largely contained, the response team is planning to reduce resources dedicated to the fire on Monday.
The only remaining heat and smoke activity is in inaccessible terrain within the interior of the fire’s northeast corner, in pockets that are being monitored by aircraft.
Winter storms and cooler temperatures are also expected to help subdue the fire through early next week. Even with wind speeds expected to increase up to 40 miles per hour, officials do not anticipate fire growth.
The Horse Fire ignited about seven miles northwest of the Crown King area and 18 miles south of Prescott on Oct. 15.
Investigators have determined the fire was the result of human activity, but the exact cause remains under investigation.
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