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Military exercise ignited blaze that torched homes caused evacuation

Issued: 2018-03-26

Live-fire training started the fire on Fort Carson that burned about 400 acres on post and about 2,900 acres off post, according to post officials.

The blaze ignited March 16 at the Colorado post while infantry and helicopter units were training for an upcoming deployment, officials said in a news release.

The next day, the Carson Midway Fire spread to private property and destroyed three houses, forcing the evacuation of about 250 homes.

Despite the conditions, training continued because the soldiers were preparing to deploy overseas, officials said. The fire was extinguished by March 22.

Fort Carson uses precautionary measures to mitigate the risk of fires on ranges and training areas, including communicating the fire level throughout the post’s emergency services, command, support and training units, according to the release.

Fire department personnel are pre-staged during increased fire-danger periods, the release said.

A wildfire that started on a southern Colorado Army post amid dry, windy weather jumped the post boundary on Friday, destroyed an unknown number of structures and forced the evacuation of at least 250 homes.

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