by Pam Zubeck
Firefighters have contained three quarters of the Black Forest Fire, which burned 14,280 acres, claimed about 480 homes and killed two people.
According to the latest fire report, full containment is expected Thursday. The firefighting cost exceeds $5.5 million, and 1,130 firefighters remain on the fire, along with 101 engines, five bulldozers and two helicopters.
El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa provided the following update for evacuations:
Most areas north of Hodgen Rd. are now under pre-evacuation.
To include (areas now under pre-evacuation):
South of Walker Rd.
East of Bar X Rd. and Highland Estates Rd.
North of Hodgen Rd.
West of Winchester Rd.
North side of Morgan Rd.
North side of Hardy Rd.
This does not include the areas east of Winchester Rd., south of Morgan Rd. and south of Hardy Rd. Including the following roads north of Hodgen Rd:
(areas north of Hodgen Rd. still under mandatory evacuation)
West Goshawk Rd.
East Goshawk Rd.
Albert Ridge View
Residents trying to reenter will need to show their driver’s license or registration. Residents are encouraged to leave heavy equipment alone. Please do not remove the flags on your property. Those are a signal to first responders the area has been cleared for reentry.
Residents need to use the following reentry points:
From the west — use Hodgen Rd. or Walker Rd.
From the east — use Evans Rd. or McCune Rd.
From the north — use County Line Rd. to Black Forest Rd. or Meridian Rd.
Meridian Rd. North of Hodgen Rd. is now open.