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Friday, 15 July, 2011, Los Alamos, NM: The largest forest fire in New Mexico history, the Las Conchas fire continues to burn in the Jemez mountains, north and south of Los Alamos.  Last night, Thursday, fire fighters created a 400' wide by 2 mi. long back burn in and effort to contain the southern flank of the fire.  The city of Los Alamos and Los Alamos National Laboratory are safe.. .The Las Conchas forest fire had threatened the town of Los Alamos and Los Alamos National Laboratory, America's foremost nuclear research facility.  12,000 residents were evacuated and the National Laboratory was closed. The potential of LANL hazard waste becoming airborne if incinerated by the fire was avoided and air sampling has proven that the greatest health hazard is from the smoke itself. Three Type 1 Incident Management Teams were dispatched with over 2,500 firefighters on the lines at one point.  Native American Pueblos of Cochiti and Santa Clara suffered terribly with sacred lands and watersheds going up in flames.  Bandelier National Monument, one of America's National Archaeological treasures was severely damaged, losing 18,000 of its total 30,000 acres to the fire.  This was the second forest fire to threaten these areas in 11 years, the first being the Cerro Grande in 2000 which was 1/3 the size.. .A downed tree and power line along with extreme drought conditions are blamed for the origin of this fast moving and devastating fire, which grew to an estimated 50,000 acres within 24 hours.  Around 1:00 pm Sunday, June 26, 2011 an aspen tree was blown down by intense winds onto a power line which ignited the tree, broke the power line sending the lit tree to the ground which ignited the surrounding forest.  The fire started roughly 12 miles southwest of Los Alamos close to the Las Conchas trailhead on private property near highway marker 35 on State Road 4. ..Cause: Human.Size:  150,000 acres, (235 sq. mi.).Percent Contained:  61%.Current Personnel:  1,001 including 19 crews
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