Colorado wildfire grows to 58 square miles

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LAPORTE | A wildfire west of Fort Collins has nearly doubled to 58 square miles, forcing hundreds of evacuations and destroying at least 18 structures.

The Larimer County Sheriff’s Office said Monday that 400 people are now fighting the blaze. The U.S. Forest Service says a federal team will take over management of the fire on Monday.

The Colorado fire, burning in a mountainous area about 15 miles west of Fort Collins, grew to more than 31 square miles on Sunday.

Authorities say it’s the worst fire seen in Larimer County in about 25 years. Flames were coming dangerously close to deputies who were telling some residents to evacuate.

By comparison, the Hayman fire, Colorado’s largest wildfire, destroyed 214 square miles in 2002.