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Wildfires Blaze Through Arizona

Firefighters can't contain Wallow Fire
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 5, 2011 8:51 AM CDT
Wildfires Blaze Through Arizona
Jim Tress, right, and his daughter Samantha move furniture as they evacuate their home in Greer, Ariz., Saturday, June 4, 2011.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Firefighters worked through the night to protect several mountain communities from a wildfire that has been blazing uncontrolled since May 29. The 144,000-acre Wallow Fire, near the New Mexico-Arizona state line, has burned through 225 square miles of forest and brush and is the third largest fire in state history. Fire officials have zero containment of it, the AP reports. Gov. Jan Brewer called it “horrific.”

Crews are “fighting fire with fire,” says a fire management spokesperson, by using controlled backfires to take fuel from the advancing blaze. Some 1,300 firefighters, some from as far away as New York, are helping. Meanwhile, the Horseshoe Two fire expanded to 100,200 acres yesterday, making it the state’s fifth largest fire. It has burned 156 square miles since May 8 and is threatening two communities, but is 55% contained. (Read more fires stories.)

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