Firefighters battle wildfires in 6 states

Shelters opened, homes destroyed as thousands of acres burn

BALTIMORE | April 4, 2011

High winds drove flames across thousands of acres of dry timber and grass Sunday and Monday across six-states as firefighters fought to control the wildfires.

Fire officials estimated that more than 100 wildfires were reported across Oklahoma Sunday. Residents in Guymon, the largest town in the Oklahoma Panhandle, were evacuated Sunday night as a grass fire approached the town. The fire was out Monday afternoon but throughout the night, more than 1,000 homes lost power and a shelter was set up at Victory Memorial United Methodist Church.

In Colorado, a mountain fire near Fort Collins, claimed more than seven square miles and burned at least 15 homes before a snowstorm and calmer winds helped firefighters. However, fire officials said the fire was just 5 percent contained by Monday morning. Smoke from the fire prompted an air quality warning for Larimer County.

Wildfires were also reported in the southern part of the state near Pueblo.

In New Mexico, a fire near Ruidoso, destroyed several homes and barns as it scorched more than 6,000 acres. Firefighters said the fire was approximately 20 percent contained Monday afternoon.

Wildfires were also reported in Texas, Kansas and Arkansas.

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