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Crystal Fire Once Again Forces Evacuations

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FORT COLLINS, Colo. (CBS4/AP) - Fire officials say there have been more evacuations Tuesday evening because of the Crystal wildfire near Fort Collins.

Due to high winds there was an increase in fire activity on Tuesday. The people that are evacuated are being sent to Walt Clark Middle School in Loveland located at 2605 Carlisle Drive. They are people who were evacuated previously, but not the whole group that was evacuated on Sunday.

“The Larimer County Sheriff’s Office issued a telephone notification to residents along Moondance Way, Red Tail Ridge Way and Stringtown Gulch Road to evacuate the area,” officials said in prepared statement. “In addition, residents along Lightning Ridge Way, Ohana Way, Deer Path Street and the lower portion of Wildsong Road have been contacted to evacuate.”

Strong winds also grounded helicopters in the 5-square-mile Colorado wildfire that has destroyed about 15 houses.

Fire managers stopped flying two choppers Tuesday afternoon that were dropping water and another copter doing reconnaissance.

Winds in the foothills west of Fort Collins had been gusting to around 35 mph.

Residents were warned to prepare to leave should the fire spread.

Warm, windy weather has raised the fire danger in the Front Range foothills, northeastern plains as well as southern Colorado.

Larimer County, where the wildfire is burning, has enacted a ban on open fires and fireworks.

The blaze exploded overnight Saturday when winds reached 50 mph and higher. More than 300 homes were temporarily evacuated.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Photos Of The Fire

danny dodge Crystal Fire Once Again Forces Evacuations
Danny Dodge captured this image of the blaze early Sunday.
crystal Crystal Fire Once Again Forces Evacuations
Mark Bowers took this photo of the fire from Fort Collins.

LINK: Larimer County Emergency Information

Link: U.S. Forest Service’s Incident Information

LINK: Wildfire Resources

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