Digital News Report – The Los Conchas Wildfire has been burning since Sunday, June 26, 2011. The Los Alamos National Laboratory has been closed operations for since the fire has started and the facilities will remain closed through Thursday, June 30. The City of Los Alamos has been evacuated.
The Los Alamos National Laboratory reported having been prepared for a fire since having faced the 2000 Cerro Grande Fire. This prompted the government group to aquire 35 fire trucks, service vehicles and other heavy equipment that would be able to help fight a fire. They have also built a emergency operations center at the facilities. To help prevent fire damage, they spent $20 million to think trees and clear brush as well as construct firebreak lines.
According to the government officials, there is around one acre of the laboratory grounds that have been burned in a remote southwest area. The fire crews had put the fire out on Monday afternoon.
The Los Conhas fire has reached 3 percent containment and has burned around 69,555 acres so far. Fire officials are still investigating the cause of the fire.
The Los Alamos County Administrator issued evacuation orders for the City of Los Alamos. There is a pre-evacuation notice for people living in the forest located near the fire.
The Bureau of Land Management’s Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument announced that they would close the park to the public. The fire does not threaten the monument yet. The Bandelier National Monument will be closed until further notice.
By: Greg Cook