COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — A sheriff said remains of two people have been found in an area burned by a wildfire northeast of Colorado Springs.
Terry Maketa, the El Paso County sheriff, said one person who was reported missing on Wednesday was found safe, but on Thursday crews found the remains of another person who had been reported missing. About an hour later they found the remains of a second person.
The Black Forest Fire has destroyed at least 360 houses, and an estimated 40,000 people have been ordered to leave their homes. The blaze is now the most destructive in Colorado history.
Residents were ordered to leave 1,000 homes in Colorado Springs. Thursday’s evacuation was the first within the city limits. About 38,000 other people living across roughly 70 square miles were already under orders to get out.
Colorado’s second-largest city, with a population of 430,000, also asked residents of 2,000 more homes to be ready to evacuate. The streets became gridlocked with cars while emergency vehicles raced by on the shoulders.
Hot, gusty winds fanned the 23-square-mile wildfire, sending it into new areas and back into places that had previously been spared. Even fire investigators were pulled out for safety reasons.