- The former Cambridge fire chief was overwhelmed by smoke and fire, a NEMA spokesman said.
- The Calf Canyon Fire in New Mexico is only 12% contained
- The tunnel fire in Arizona is only 3% contained
A former Cambridge, Nebraska fire chief has died while battling one of at least three major fires in the state. Said fire is one of a number of wind-driven wildfires in the Southwest region, specifically in Nebraska, Arizona and New Mexico, that is burning more than 120,000 acres of land.
Authorities said retired Cambridge Fire Chief John P. Trumble, 66, died Friday night, while at least 15 other firefighters were injured while battling a blaze in Red Willow County, Nebraska. Associated Press reported. Alyssa Sanders of the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) said Trumble’s body was found early Saturday morning after smoke and fire engulfed it. The fire that killed Trumble burned more than 78 square miles of land as of Sunday afternoon. It is unclear how much of the fire has been contained.
As part of efforts to contain the three major fires in the state, Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts approved the deployment of 32 people from the Nebraska National Guard to help with emergency operations, The Hill reported. The state National Guard deployed at least three helicopters and several trucks to help contain the fires, The New York Times reported.
Nebraska fire crews reported wildfires in 14 counties, with the Road 702 fire raising concerns. At a briefing on Sunday, authorities said the fire was still growing. It has burned 50,000 acres of land so far.
In New Mexico, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said over the weekend that the biggest fire threat in the state was the Calf Canyon Fire, which had burned more than 54,000 acres as of Sunday. The fire also burned more than 200 structures and threatened some 900 residences. At least 1,000 firefighters were dispatched to battle the blaze, which was 12% contained on Sunday.
In photos released by the Taos County Sheriff’s Office, the Calf Canyon Fire can be seen. burning structures rapidly and spreading from one structure to another. The Sheriff’s Office said the area shown in the photos had been evacuated just hours before the fire spread through that part of the county, KOAT-TV reported.
Grisham has signed emergency declarations due to 20 wildfires in New Mexico. The Cooks Peak Fire in the North Region has burned nearly 50,000 acres. It was 0% contained as of Sunday.
Meanwhile, evacuation orders issued last week for neighborhoods affected by the tunnel fire in Arizona have been lifted, CNN reported. Orders were changed to “prepare to evacuate,” but a statewide emergency response advisory warned residents to beware of various fire-related hazards, including “hot ash” that could “cause severe burns if intervened.” “. The Tunnel Fire, which first began burning near Flagstaff, has burned more than 21,000 acres of land and, as of Sunday, was 3% contained.
Late last week, authorities said strong winds helped fuel wildfires in the southwestern United States. At the time, Joy Ansley, a spokeswoman for San Miguel County in New Mexico, said that while the forced evacuations of people were “heartbreaking,” authorities would not let “people back in once they got out” as it was “very difficult”. serious, a very bleak situation.” In total, the wildfires in Arizona, Nebraska, and New Mexico are burning more than 120,000 acres of land.
© Copyright IBTimes 2022. All rights reserved.