Published On: Wed, Jul 14th, 2021

Thousands of Firefighters Battle Big Blazes Across the West

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BLY, Ore.—An army of firefighters labored in hot, dry and windy weather Tuesday to contain fires chewing through wilderness and burning homes across drought-stricken Western states. More than 60 active large blazes are burning in the West and Alaska. More than 14,000 firefighters and support personnel were attacking fires covering close to a million acres (1,562 square miles) of land, according to the National Interagency Fire Center. The largest fire in the United States was incinerating huge swaths of the Fremont-Winema National Forest in southern Oregon, where firefighters received a warning about conditions from incident commander Al Lawson. “As you go out there today—adjust your reality,” he said. “We have not seen a fire move like this, in these conditions, this early in the year. Expect the fire to do things that you have not seen before.” The week-old Bootleg Fire had ravaged about 316 square miles by Tuesday morning, …

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