416 Fire grows to more than 54,000 acres, firefighting cost rises to $30 million

DURANGO, Colo. — The 416 Fire north of Durango grew to 54,129 acres as of Friday evening. Firefighting costs also rose to $30 million, according to officials.

There are 290 people working on the fire, which began on June 1. It is 50 percent contained.

On July 2, officials said the last of the pre-evacuation notices had been lifted.

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Firefighters had been dealing with high temperatures, strong winds and low relative humidity.

Continued cool, wet weather has reduced fire behavior to creeping and smoldering in heavy fuels that are sheltered by the tree canopy.

As the amount of rain increases, it will penetrate the canopy, wetting fuels and making them less available to burn. Smoke impacts to surrounding communities should diminish rapidly as fuels become saturated.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

The nearby Burro Fire in Montezuma County has burned 4,593 acres and is 90 percent contained as of Saturday evening.

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