DRAGOON, Ariz. — Some Cochise County residents who were ordered to evacuate as fire crews fight the Walnut Fire are allowed to return home.
Evacuations were lifted for the area, according to an update from fire officials Thursday.
The lightning-caused wildfire progressed toward Interstate 10 near Dragoon since igniting on June 22.
The Arizona Department of Transportation said the right lane of I-10 and the off-ramp to the Texas Canyon Rest Area was closed while crews worked to hold the fire along the road.
We are continuing to track the efforts to contain the blaze and we will update the public on any new information as soon as it becomes available. Please check back often for the latest information.
Here’s a breakdown of everything we know on the fire:
How many acres has it burned?
The Walnut Fire has burned more than 10,667 acres and is 80% contained as of Tuesday, fire documents state.
Extreme temperatures and winds pushed the wildfire towards I-10, according to officials.
"The much-welcomed, scattered precipitation fell over the fire area Wednesday afternoon, keeping fire spread minimal. This allowed firefighters to make progress on containment lines, begin mop-up, and formulate a strategic direct plan of attack on the Walnut Fire," a statement from officials said Thursday.
Are there any evacuations?
Evacuation orders were lifted on Thursday. All residents in the area were asked to go back to "READY" status.
What roads or highways have been closed?
Interstate 10 has reopened after several days of being closed.
Drivers traveling on I-10 between Benson and Willcox should be cautious, officials said.
Call 511 or follow ADOT for the latest updates on road closures.
Beginning Friday, June 25, 2021, at 8 a.m., closures to all state-owned and managed lands will be implemented in all 15 counties. Until Friday, Stage II fire restrictions remained in place.
Are there any shelters available for residents who may be evacuated?
Officials have not announced any plans to open shelters for possible evacuees at this time.
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