Decker Fire near Salida grows to more than 7,300 acres, new evacuations ordered

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SALIDA, Colo. — The Decker Fire grew to more than 7,300 acres on Sunday, the Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team said.

The fire, which was started by lightning Sept. 8, has burned 7,326 acres and is 30% contained. It is burning 2 miles south of Salida in the  Sangre de Cristo Wilderness.

New evacuation orders were issued in Chaffee and Fremont Counties on Sunday for residence of Bear Creek Silver Hills Drive and two residents on a private drive near Silver Heels Drive. The communities of Wellsville and Swissvale were also put under evacuation status.

A large air tanker was brought in from Fresno, California to provide air support for the fire on Sunday, according to the Rocky Mountain Area Coordination Center.

A cabin on Methodist Mountain in Chaffee County has been lost as well as a structure in Fremont County.

Over 850 firefighters are battling the fire, which is burning in moderately stocked mixed conifer with timer litter, and moderate dead and down trees.

The estimated date for full containment is Dec. 20.

Plans are in place for firefighters and crew members to have warm, dry places to sleep, officials said.

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