Oregon wildfires controlled, but Colorado wildfires only 45 percent contained

Oregon wildfires have been stemmed by better weather and more fire crews, but the Colorado wildfires are still raging. The Colorado wildfires already have destroyed nearly 500 homes.

Mark Leffingwell / Reuters
El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa gives a containment update on the Black Forest Fire near Colorado Springs, Colorado, on June 15. Rain and calmer winds helped firefighters tame Colorado's most destructive wildfire on record. Fire managers expect it will take nearly another week to fully corral the blaze, but rain showers and a successful night on the fire lines mark a 'turning point,' says Maketa.

Wildfire update: Oregon's wildfires have slowed, thanks to better weather and more firefighters, while Colorado firefighters "are getting the upper hand" on the most destructive wildfire in state history.

Colorado officials are beginning to see the grim landscape the wildfire has left behind, says El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa.

In some areas, it looks "like a nuclear bomb went off," said Sherrif Maketa, making it difficult for officials know what used to be homes or other structures.

The fire that exploded Tuesday outside of Colorado Springs has destroyed nearly 500 homes and killed 2 people. 

In Oregon, crews have a handle on the Malheur County fires that were caused by lightning and driven by two days of windy weather, said Mark Wilkening, a spokesman for the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, on Thursday. He gave credit to the arrival of more firefighters and equipment on Wednesday, shifting and calming winds, and spotty rain.

In Oregon, containment lines have been drawn around more than 60 percent of the fire area.

In Colorado, containment is at 45 percent, and most mandatory evacuation orders have been lifted.

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