The Wallow Fire has scorched hundreds of thousands of acres in eastern Arizona, forced thousands from their homes, and has affected areas as far as the Midwest.
Here are answers to some of your frequently asked questions about the massive blaze.
Question: How did the Wallow Fire start? The human-caused Wallow Fire started on May 29, 2011. Officially, the fire remains under investigation and no individuals have been charged.
Q: How big is it? The current size sits at 386,530 acres, as of Thursday night. Over the last several days, the fire size and gone up and down based on changing information from the fire lines.
Q: Is there any containment? There is 5 percent containment as of Thursday, June 9.
Q: Have there been any injuries? Three minor injuries have been reported.
Q: What is happening with animals in the area? While the shelter at Blue Ridge High School in Lakeside doesn’t take animals, there is help for them . The Red Cross said Round Valley Animal Rescue is taking pets including cats, dogs and small critters.
For more information, call 928-551-0803. If you have horses or other livestock, contact the St. John's Fairgrounds at 928-551-0803 or 928-333-1051.
The American Humane Society has also set up a shelter for dogs and cats for evacuees next to the Show Low Dog Pound at 1181 N. Thornton in Show Low.
Q: Have any buildings been damaged? Twenty-nine structures have been lost, 5 damaged, and 5242 are threatened
Q: Are there any road closures? Nearly 20 miles of U.S. 60 has been closed from Springerville to the New Mexico state line due to the Wallow Fire in eastern Arizona. This closure stretches from milepost 384 to 401. State Route 260 is now closed in both directions east of the Hawley Lake turnoff (State Route 473 junction) and Eager. Check current traffic conditions throughout the state.
Q: How big is it in comparison to other Arizona wildfires? The Wallow Fire is officially the second largest fire in recent state history. The biggest fire in our state was the Rodeo-Chediski Fire, which burned 469,000 acres near Show Low in 2002.
The Cave Creek Complex Fire now ranks number three on the list. It burned 248,000 acres - just northeast of the Valley - in 2005.
The fourth largest in our state's history is the Willow Fire, which burned 120,000 acres near Payson back in 2004.
And the fifth largest fire is also burning right now, in southeastern Arizona. The Horseshoe Two Fire in Cochise County started May 8th, and has burned more than 100,000 acres.
Q. How is weather affecting the fire? A fire official said winds are expected to drop from 35 mph down to 20 mph Thursday, helping slow the spread of hot embers.
Q: Why is it called the Wallow Fire? In most cases, the dispatch center sending the initial resources to a wildfire give the name, but the first on scene fire official can also name it.
A wildfire is commonly named for the area in which they ignite. This can include a landmark or a geographical spot, which could be a mountain or a lake.
In the case of the Wallow Fire, the Bear Wallow Wilderness area is in the Apache Sitgreaves National Forest, which is where the fire is burning.
Q: How do you prepare yourself if a wildfire is coming toward your home? There are items people should have ready to go in case of an emergency. Get prepared.
Q. How can I help Wallow Fire victims? If you want to help out you can donate to the American Red Cross by texting the word "Red Cross" to 9-0-9-9-9. A $10 dollar donation will show up on your cell phone bill or be deducted from your pre-paid balance.
You can also find out how you can help by calling 602-336-6660, or visiting 6135 N. Black Canyon Hwy., Phoenix
Copyright 2011 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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