Governor Hickenlooper declares emergency for Lightner Creek fire, authorizes disaster efforts

Posted at 11:13 AM, Jun 29, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-30 00:46:08-04

DURANGO, Colo. — Disaster assistance measures are going into effect in Durango after Governor John Hickenlooper declared a disaster emergency Thursday for the Lightner Creek fire.

La Plata County officials who have been battling the 360-acre fire that is dangerously close to the City of Durango turned over firefighting efforts to the State of Colorado on Thursday. 

As of Thursday, 170 homes had been evacuated and countless ground and air crews have been dispatched to help battle the flames, which are burning just north of Highway 160. 

Evacuations were ordered for all Lightner Creek residents in Durango from the intersection of 207 and 208 up to Lightner Creek Road. Pre-evacuation notices were sent out to all residents from the intersection of 207 and 207 to Highway 160, said Scot Davis, a spokesman for the Durango Fire Rescue.

The wildfire began as a home fire, which spiraled out of control and eventually led to the destruction of one structure. Another structure was salvaged. 
Nearby trails and some road closures persist in the area, however the Durango County Fairgrounds have been opened as an evacuation center for people and animals displaced by evacuations.