RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — More than 300 firefighters from across South Dakota are helping battle the wildfires raging in Colorado.

The Rapid City Journal reports that some of the South Dakota firefighters are nearing the end of a 14-day rotation in a region where fires have burned across rugged mesas and mountains.

Jay Esperance, head of the South Dakota Division of Wildland Fire, is leading the Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team fighting the East Peak Fire. That blaze has covered more than 13,000 acres, or 20 square miles, since it started on June 19.

The South Dakota firefighters in Colorado include 64 full-time and seasonal firefighters from the state Division of Wildland Fire. Other wildland fire crews, volunteer fire departments and city departments also have sent firefighters to Colorado.

Wildfire Resources

– Visit CBSDenver.com’s Wildfire Resources section.

– Read recent Wildfire stories.

Wildfire Photo Galleries

– See images from the most destructive wildfires (Black Forest, Waldo Canyon, High Park and Fourmile) and largest wildfire (Hayman) in Colorado history.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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