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Pre-evacuation notice issued for Swissvale, Wellsville after Decker Fire flare up

Update: Swissvale and Wellsville were placed on evacuation notice as of 2:17 p.m. by the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office.

The Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office has also issued an evacuation order for residents of Bear Creek, Silver Heels Drive and two residences just west of Silver Heels Drive.

Previous story:

The Decker Fire jumped a fire line near the Bear Creek area Sunday afternoon, prompting the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office to issue pre-evacuation notices for the Swissvale and Wellsville communities.

Rick Barton with the Rocky Mountain Incident Respons Team tells us that strong winds blew embers across a fire line near the Rainbow trail, quickly igniting unburned fuels.

“Fortunately, we had a plan for such an occurrence,” says Barton. The fire is still behind a secondary contingency line which crews are holding.

Fire crews have been pulled from the line burning northeast of Bear Creek. The team has requested an air tanker to drop retardant on the fire. Helicopters are continuing to dump water on the blaze.

Barton says residents will see an increase in smoke from Highway 50 between Salida and Howard, citing heavy winds and no humidity.

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