Jun 6, 2021 - Energy & Environment

2 Arizona wildfires burn 60,000 acres and force hundreds to evacuate

The Telegraph Fire, three miles south of Superior, is approximately 1,500 acres, according to Tonto National Forest.

The Telegraph Fire, three miles south of town of Superior in Pinal County, Arizona. Photo: Tonto National Forest/Twitter

Two wildfires in eastern Arizona have triggered evacuation orders for hundreds of people as they burned across some 60,000 acres Sunday, per CNN.

Driving the news: The fires are burning amid hot, dry conditions and as much of the state is experiencing an "extreme" or "exceptional drought."

Details: One of the blazes, the Telegraph Fire, has razed some 34,365 acres since erupting on Friday, forcing the closure of a major highway near Tonto National Forest, according to the InciWeb wildfire information system.

  • The Pinal County Sheriff's Office urged the 250-person┬ácommunity of Top-of-the-World to evacuate ahead of the approaching uncontained fire Sunday afternoon, warning: "If you choose to ignore this advisement, you must understand emergency services may not be able to assist you further."
  • Residents in nearby town of Superior, which has a population of roughly 3,000 people, had been advised to get ready to evacuate, CNN notes.

The other wildfire, the Mescal Fire, has burned nearly 26,000 acres across the Mescal Mountains, some 120 miles east of Phoenix and was 2% contained as of Sunday, per InciWeb.

Go deeper