Arizona wildfires

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Arizona, Families of 19 Dead 'Hotshots' Reach Deal

State also promises more training after tragic 2013 deaths of elite firefighters

(Newser) - Today marks the two-year anniversary of the deaths of 19 elite firefighters in an out-of-control Arizona wildfire, and it also brings a measure of closure as the state of Arizona announced today it has settled two lawsuits against the state's Forestry Division for more than $600,000 to the... More »

Radio Problems Tied to Deaths of 19 Firefighters

Investigators say communication was shoddy during Arizona blaze

(Newser) - An investigation into the June deaths of 19 firefighters killed while battling an Arizona blaze has found improperly programmed radios, vague updates, and a 30-minute communication blackout just before the flames engulfed the men. The report says at the moment the firefighters were killed, an air tanker carrying fire retardant... More »

Wife of Fallen Firefighter in Arizona Has Baby Boy

Two more women are expecting

(Newser) - Jaxon Misner won't get to meet his dad: The newborn is the son of Sean Misner, one of the 19 firefighters killed in June while battling a wildfire, reports the Arizona Republic . Mom Amanda Misner gave birth last night, and she and the child are doing fine. Jaxon (his... More »

Sole Surviving Arizona Firefighter Finally Speaks

Brendan McDonough says he isn't quitting firefighting

(Newser) - Brendan McDonough, the only member of the Granite Mountain Hotshot Crew to survive a deadly wildfire in Arizona in June , has given his first interview since the tragedy to ABC News . Contrary to earlier reports, McDonough—known to his colleagues as "Donut"—says the team was aware that... More »

Lone Survivor Salutes Firefighters at Service

Thousands gather in Arizona

(Newser) - The lone survivor of the Arizona wildfire that killed 19 of his fellow firefighters helped bid them farewell today at a memorial in Prescott, Ariz. A stone-faced Brendan McDonough, 21, filed onto the stage at the end of the service and offered what's called "The Hotshot's Prayer"... More »

How the Arizona Fire Tragedy Unfolded

New reports detail the final moments of the Hotshot crew

(Newser) - Although the circumstances of how 19 firefighters were killed in Arizona's Yarnell Hill Fire are already broadly known , new reports offer a more detailed look at how the tragedy unfolded. The AP has compiled a map of the Hotshot crew's final movements, confirmed by fire officials, showing the... More »

Arizona Fire Now 45% Contained

Yarnell Hill blaze has ravaged 8.4K acres

(Newser) - The Arizona wildfire that killed 19 elite firefighters has been 45% contained, up from an official figure of 8% yesterday, as teams link fire lines, the Arizona Republic reports. "We’ve had a very productive day today," an official said yesterday. Authorities said they hadn't seen any... More »

Meet the Sole Surviving Arizona Firefighter

He is 21-year-old Brendan McDonough. Now leave him alone

(Newser) - Nineteen members of the Granite Mountain Hotshots firefighter crew perished in Arizona last week , but one lone member survived. After days of mounting media scrutiny, his identity has been revealed: He is 21-year-old Brendan McDonough, the Arizona Republic reports. But now that you know, says the Prescott Fire Department, please... More »

Firefighter Sent Wife Final Image of Doomed Crew

'It’s getting really wild out here,' he said

(Newser) - Before he perished along with 18 other firefighters, Andrew Ashcraft texted his wife a final photograph of the Granite Mountain Hotshots crew making camp for lunch as smoke from the Yarnell Hill fire rose in the background. "I'd love to be in a swimming pool right now,"... More »

Hotshots' Doom Sealed by Fire's Sudden Shift

'Burn over' in Yarnell Hill fire overtook 19 firefighters

(Newser) - The 19 firefighters killed in Arizona's Yarnell Hill Fire were among "the best of the best" in their field, say peers—but that wasn't enough to protect members of the Granite Mountain Interagency Hotshot Crew when the fire took a quick, unexpected turn. "Only Mother Nature... More »

3 Fallen Firefighters Were Expectant Dads

14 of the men were in their 20s

(Newser) - More than a thousand people gathered in Prescott, Ariz., yesterday to mourn 19 firefighters who died battling an out-of-control wildfire . Speakers including Rep. Trent Franks praised the men for their heroism and sacrifice, the AP reports. Authorities have now released the names of the 19 victims, 14 of whom were... More »

19 Elite Firefighters Dead in Arizona

They were trapped by wildfire in Yarnell

(Newser) - Tragedy in central Arizona, where 19 elite firefighters are dead after getting trapped by a fast-moving wildfire in the town of Yarnell. Eighteen of the men were part of the Granite Mountain Hotshots crew from Prescott, reports the Arizona Republic . An additional crew member wasn't with his team and... More »

Sentence for Starting Record Arizona Fire: 2 Days in Jail

Cousins Caleb and David Malboeuf thought they put out campfire

(Newser) - Two cousins who admitted starting the largest wildfire in Arizona history were sentenced yesterday to spend a weekend in jail and perform 200 hours of community service. Caleb and David Malboeuf also will each be on supervised probation for five years. The Malboeufs were camping in Arizona's Apache-Sitgreaves National... More »

Fireplace Ashes Caused Huge Nevada Brush Fire

'Remorseful' elderly man comes forward to police

(Newser) - The massive brush fire near Reno this week that destroyed 29 homes, burned 3,200 acres, forced the evacuation of thousands, and may have caused a death had the most innocent of causes: Police say an elderly man admits accidentally setting it off by improperly disposing of ashes from his... More »

2 Charged With Biggest-Ever Arizona Wildfire

Pair accused of leaving campfire when hiking

(Newser) - Two Arizona cousins who allegedly left a campfire unattended have been charged with starting the biggest wildfire in the state's history . The Wallow fire, which burned more than 800 square miles of wilderness in June, began after Caleb and David Wayne Malboeuf left their fire—which they believed to... More »

Arizona Fire Season Worst in History

Almost 1M acres charred

(Newser) - In terms of sheer acreage, it’s been the worst year on record for Arizona wildfires: Some 981,748 acres were charred in the flames, surpassing the 2005 record of 975,178. Driving the flames were dry weather and heavy winds early in the summer, reports the Arizona Republic . But... More »

Los Alamos Officials Still Confident Lab Is Safe

But thousands of experiments remain idle during shutdown

(Newser) - Los Alamos nuclear laboratory officials say it could be a few days before they'll know the extent of how experiments at the facility that created the first atomic bomb have been affected by a shutdown caused by a 125-square-mile wildfire . The lab has been shut down since Monday, when... More »

Wildfires Will Rage Until Rainy Season

And rains aren't expected until mid-July at earliest

(Newser) - Don't expect the news of wildfires blazing through the Southwest to end any time soon. Officials say fire danger will remain for several more weeks. The seasonal rains that normally stop the fire threat aren't expected to come until mid-July at the soonest. "We're not even... More »

Arizona Sheriff: Mexican Smugglers Set Fire

His comments back John McCain; he's not referring to big Wallow Fire

(Newser) - An Arizona sheriff has backed up John McCain and blamed Mexican drug smugglers for starting at least one of the state's raging wildfires. Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever wasn't referring to the enormous Wallow Fire but to a smaller one called the Monument Fire that has burned up... More »

6 States Ablaze, 1.2M Acres Lost

OK, fire not being caused by illegal immigrants, admits John McCain

(Newser) - Six states are ablaze in a searing summer that's breaking records for wildfires. More than 1.2 million acres have already burned and some 10,000 people have been forced to flee their homes as flames devour land in Arizona, New Mexico, California, and Colorado, as well as Georgia... More »

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