Forest Service: Abandoned illegal campfire started Buzzard Fire | KOB 4
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Forest Service: Abandoned illegal campfire started Buzzard Fire

The Associated Press
May 31, 2018 06:19 PM

SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) - The Forest Service says investigators have determined that an abandoned illegal campfire caused a fire that has burned 34 square miles of timber in the Gila National Forest in western New Mexico.

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The Buzzard Fire burning east of Reserve, New Mexico, and near the Eagle Point Lookout is contained around about a third of its perimeter.

Approximately 520 firefighters and other personnel are assigned to the fire, which started May 22.

Crews are burning out control lines in several areas to try to halt the fire's spread, but a red flag warning is in effect because dry, warm and windy weather conditions are expected.

Moderate increases of smoke from the fire are expected to toward Albuquerque, Socorro and Truth or Consequences.

NEW MEXICO CLOSES SITES ADJACENT TO SANTA FE NATIONAL FOREST

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - New Mexico is closing State Game Commission properties adjacent to the Santa National Forest to coincide with the forest's full closure that takes effect Friday because of drought and extreme fire danger.

The Department of Game and Fish says the state's closures also take effect Friday and include campgrounds and fishing areas in Pecos Canyon, the Bluebird Wildlife Management Area, and portions of Fenton Lake Wildlife Management Area.

The department says the closure order prohibits all public access and recreational activities on the affected properties, including campgrounds, parking areas, trails and trailheads.

The Santa Fe forest's closure is the first forest closure for New Mexico this season, though portions of national forests in neighboring Arizona already have closed.

Portions of several National Park Service sites will be closed beginning Friday.

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The Associated Press

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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