Colorado residents driven from their homes by wildfires last summer are again turning to Twitter for the latest information on several wildfires closing in on residential areas. The largest is the Black Forest fire, which KRDO is reporting has consumed 400 acres so far and is spreading quickly.
Savvy Twitter users are coordinating hashtags and timestamps to track alerts and evacuation orders in real-time, as well as to relieve the stress on phone lines.
A giant smoke plume is visible for miles.
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The Big Meadows fire, which was started by a lightning strike Monday afternoon in Rocky Mountain National Park, has grown to around 100 acres.
The #KlikusFire hashtag has joined the other three, and unlike the Big Meadows fire, it does pose a threat to nearby residents.
This panorama shows smoke from both the Black Forest and Royal Gorge fires.
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Update, 9:30 p.m.:
Authorities say that more than 2,500 homes have been evacuated because of the Black Forest fire, but there is no report of fatalities, nor an estimate of how many homes have been burned.
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KRDO’s Heather Skold is reporting just before 1 a.m. Eastern that there are no reports of injuries, but the fire has spread dramatically and more than 5,000 have been displaced.
Update 1:47am Eastern:
The fire has jumped Meridian Road.
More pre-evac orders and evac orders have gone out.
Gov. Hickenlooper appeared before TV cameras to deliver these words of wisdom.
Power has been turned off in affected areas.
New numbers on homes lost:
Update, Tuesday 6/12/13:
The #BlackForestFire is still at 0% containment.