Arizona Wildfire 2013: 19 Firefighters Die While Battling Yarnell Hill Blaze
06/30/13 11:40 PM ET EDT AP
YARNELL, Ariz. — A fast-moving wildfire killed 19 firefighters Sunday afternoon after the blaze raced through an Arizona community, a state forestry official told The Associated Press.
Forestry spokesman Art Morrison said the firefighters were caught by the fire near the central Arizona town of Yarnell about 85 miles northwest of Phoenix. He said the firefighters were forced to deploy their fire shelters, tent-like structures meant to shield firefighters from flames and heat.
Earlier Sunday, the 2,000-acre wildfire prompted evacuations of 50 homes in several communities. Later Sunday afternoon, the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office expanded the evacuations to include more residents in the town of Yarnell.