Evacuation orders lifted for most who fled Arizona wildfires

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Second Wildfire Burning In California County Prompts Mandatory Evacuations

BULLHEAD CITY, Ariz. (AP) -- Authorities lifted evacuation orders for most of the 1,000 homes threatened by a wildfire near the Arizona-California line, one of several blazing across the tinder-dry West.

The fire in Arizona's Mohave Valley area chewed through 10 square miles and remained uncontrolled Monday.

Evacuation orders were lifted for 900 homes after crews made solid efforts in protecting them and conditions became more favorable, said Byron Steward, Mohave County emergency management coordinator.

The wildfire broke out Saturday in the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge. Authorities say it has burned 11 structures, but they did not say whether any were homes or if they were damaged or destroyed.

The fire's cause is under investigation. Here's a look at other wildfires burning up Western states:

OLD VS. NEW CALIFORNIA FIRES

As crews close in on a destructive blaze in Northern California's rural, rocky hills, another wildfire erupted nearby and quickly spread across nearly 8 square miles.

Evacuations have been ordered for the fire that ignited Sunday and doubled in size overnight, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said.

Authorities couldn't say how many homes were evacuated or how many people were told to be prepared to flee. Containment of the fire about 100 miles north of San Francisco was not in sight Monday morning.

Firefighters and air tankers battling the bigger nearby fire were reassigned to attack the new blaze. No homes have been destroyed or injuries reported Monday.

Meanwhile, firefighters have nearly surrounded the larger blaze that started about two weeks ago and burned 109 square miles.

That fire destroyed 43 homes, but all evacuations have been lifted. Students in the Middletown Unified School District could start classes next Tuesday, but it might be later depending on where the fire burns.

Fire officials are investigating the causes of both fires. There have been five arson arrests related to smaller fires in five weeks.

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FIREFIGHTERS KILLED

A U.S. Forest Service firefighter was killed in the Lake Tahoe area after he was struck by a tree while battling a wildfire - the second firefighter killed in a California blaze since the summer wildfire season got underway.

Michael Hallenbeck, 21, of Shingle Springs, California, was hit Saturday during the initial attack on a fire that broke out south of the Echo Summit mountain pass.

On July 30, a firefighter was killed by a wildfire in the Modoc National Forest while he scouted the area for ways to fight the blaze. Forest Service firefighter David Ruhl, of Rapid City, South Dakota, had been on temporary assignment since June in California.

On Sunday, hundreds of people turned out in Rapid City to pay their respects at a procession and memorial service for Ruhl. Forest Service Associate Chief Mary Wagner attended, saying Ruhl's death was "felt by every member of the Forest Service."

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ELSEWHERE IN THE WEST

- Overcast skies and higher humidity helped fire crews get a preliminary line around a wildfire in Lewis County, Washington. Evacuations have been lifted, and there have been no reports of injuries.

While the cooler weather is helping firefighting efforts, crews are keeping an eye on thunderstorms that are in the forecast for later Monday.

- Fire crews are working to control a blaze that has spread across nearly 2 square miles on Oahu, Hawaii, and led to evacuations. No structures were damaged Monday. Part of Highway 270 closed when a pile of timber caught fire.

- A fire that started nearly three weeks ago near St. Mary Lake in Montana's Glacier National Park has burned nearly 7 square miles and is more than halfway contained.



Photos from California's 'Rocky Fire' wildfires:

39 PHOTOS
Lake County, California 'Rocky Fire' wildfires
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Evacuation orders lifted for most who fled Arizona wildfires
A firefighter lights a backfire as the Rocky Fire burns near Clearlake, Calif., on Monday, Aug. 3, 2015. The fire has charred more than 60,000 acres and destroyed at least 24 residences. (AP Photo/Josh Edelson)
CLEARLAKE, CA - AUGUST 03: A Cal Fire firefighter is silhouetted by his headlamp as he monitors a backfire while battling the Rocky Fire on August 3, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Nearly 3,000 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that has burned over 60,000 acres has forced the evacuation of 12,000 residents in Lake County. The fire is currently 12 percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. 6,300 homes are threatened by the fast moving blaze. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Flames rise from a wildfire near Clearlake, Calif., Monday, Aug. 3, 2015. Officials called for evacuations Monday as numerous homes were threatened by the flames. (AP Photo/Josh Edelson)
James Logan and his wife Lisa embrace during a community meeting for evacuees as a wildfire burns near Clearlake, Calif., Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015. Firefighters made some progress Tuesday afternoon with some help from light rain that fell in the area. (AP Photo/Josh Edelson)
Volunteers who declined to give their names react as a Sheriff informs evacuees that they will need to leave The Moose Lodge in Clearlake Oaks, Calif., on Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015. The Rocky fire continues to burn and has charred more than 65,000 acres and destroyed 24 residences. (AP Photo/Josh Edelson)
A firefighter watches a backfire as the Rocky Fire burns near Clearlake, Calif., on Monday, Aug. 3, 2015. The fire has charred more than 60,000 acres and destroyed at least 24 residences. (AP Photo/Josh Edelson)
CLEARLAKE, CA - AUGUST 03: A Cal Fire firefighter walks by burned out trees during a backfire operation to head off the Rocky Fire on August 3, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Nearly 3,000 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that has burned over 60,000 acres has forced the evacuation of 12,000 residents in Lake County. The fire is currently 12 percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. 6,300 homes are threatened by the fast moving blaze. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
CLEARLAKE, CA - AUGUST 03: A Cal Fire firefighter moves away from a tall flame as he uses a drip torch to burn dry grass during a backfire operation to head off the Rocky Fire on August 3, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Nearly 3,000 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that has burned over 60,000 acres has forced the evacuation of 12,000 residents in Lake County. The fire is currently 12 percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. 6,300 homes are threatened by the fast moving blaze. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
CLEARLAKE, CA - AUGUST 03: A Long Beach Fire Department fire captain uses a flare to burn dry grass during a backfire operation to head off the Rocky Fire on August 3, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Nearly 3,000 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that has burned over 60,000 acres has forced the evacuation of 12,000 residents in Lake County. The fire is currently 12 percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. 6,300 homes are threatened by the fast moving blaze. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
A vehicle burned in the Rocky Fire is shown near Lower Lake, Calif., Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015. Firefighters made some progress Tuesday afternoon with some help from light rain that fell in the area. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Jeff Arnold, of the Long Beach Fire Department, douses flames from a wildfire near Clearlake, Calif., Monday, Aug. 3, 2015. Officials called for evacuations Monday as numerous homes were threatened by the flames. (AP Photo/Josh Edelson)
Andrew Mehr, of the Long Beach Fire Department, looks on as flames from the Rocky fire approach near Clearlake, Calif., Monday, Aug. 3, 2015. Officials called for evacuations Monday as numerous homes were threatened by the flames. (AP Photo/Josh Edelson)
Firefighter Joe Darr douses flames of the Rocky fire along Highway 20 near Clearlake, California on August 2, 2015. Thousands of firefighters battled raging wildfires on August 2 in drought-parched California, where officials evacuated entire neighborhoods and closed miles of highway in the path of the inferno, which has claimed at least one life. AFP PHOTO / JOSH EDELSON (Photo credit should read Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)
Cal Fire firefighters watch a back burn while fighting the Rocky fire off highway 20 near Clear Lake, California on August 2, 2015. The fire has charred more than 27,000 acres, and is currently only 5% contained. (Photo credit Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)
Brush and trees burn during the Rocky fire off highway 20 near Clear Lake, California on August 2, 2015. The fire has charred more than 27,000 acres, and is currently only 5% contained. (Photo credit Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)
A Cal Fire firefighter leads a group of inmate firefighters during a burn operation to head off the Rocky Fire on August 2, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Over 1,900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that has burned over 46,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Inmate firefighters march along highway 20 as they monitor a burn operation to head off the Rocky Fire on August 2, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Over 1,900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that has burned over 46,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
A Cal Fire truck is driven away from flames as the Rocky fire burns near Clear Lake, California on August 2, 2015. The fire has charred more than 27,000 acres, and is currently only 5% contained. (Photo credit Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)
Cal Fire firefighters watch a large plume of smoke as it rises from the Rocky Fire on August 1, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Over 1,900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that burned over 22,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Oceanside Fire Department captain Greg DeAvila monitors a burn operation to head off the Rocky Fire on August 2, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Over 1,900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that has burned over 46,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Inmate firefighters monitor a burn operation to head off the Rocky Fire on August 2, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Over 1,900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that has burned over 46,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
In this long exposure, lights from a car streaks by as flames and a huge plume of smoke rise into the air as the Rocky fire burns near Clear Lake, California on August 2, 2015. The fire has charred more than 27,000 acres, and is currently only 5% contained. (Photo credit Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)
Cal Fire firefighters monitor a backfire ahead of the Rocky Fire on August 2, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Over 1,900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that burned over 22,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Firefighter Joe Darr douses flames of the Rocky fire along Highway 20 near Clearlake, California on August 2, 2015. Thousands of firefighters battled raging wildfires on August 2 in drought-parched California, where officials evacuated entire neighborhoods and closed miles of highway in the path of the inferno, which has claimed at least one life. (Photo credit Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)
The Rocky fire burns near Clear Lake, California on August 2, 2015. The fire has charred more than 27,000 acres, and is currently only 5% contained. (Photo credit Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)
Firefighter Joe Darr douses flames of the Rocky fire along Highway 20 near Clearlake, California on August 2, 2015. Thousands of firefighters battled raging wildfires on August 2 in drought-parched California, where officials evacuated entire neighborhoods and closed miles of highway in the path of the inferno, which has claimed at least one life. (Photo credit Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)
Oceanside Fire Department captain Greg DeAvila shoots a flare into dry brush during a burn operation to head off the Rocky Fire on August 2, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Over 1,900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that has burned over 46,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
A large plume of smoke rises from the Rocky Fire on August 1, 2015 near Clearlake, California. Over 1,900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that burned over 22,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed at least 14 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Goats run away from their pen after firefighters freed them as the Rocky Fire approaches on July 31, 2015 in Lower Lake, California. Over 900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that erupted to over 15,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed 3 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Flames from the Rocky Fire approach a house on July 31, 2015 in Lower Lake, California. Over 900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that erupted to over 15,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed 3 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
A firefighter monitors flames from the Rocky Fire as it approaches a home on July 31, 2015 in Lower Lake, California. Over 900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that erupted to over 15,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed 3 homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Firefighters spray a hose at a fire along Morgan Valley Road near Lower Lake, Calif., Friday, July 31, 2015. A series of wildfires were intensified by dry vegetation, triple-digit temperatures and gusting winds. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Flames from the Rocky Fire approach a house on July 31, 2015 in Lower Lake, California. Over 900 firefighters are battling the Rocky Fire that erupted to over 15,000 acres since it started on Wednesday afternoon. The fire is currently five percent contained and has destroyed three homes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Burned trees are seen along a dirt road near where homes were lost as a result of the Rocky fire near Clear lake, California on August 02, 2015. Thousands of firefighters battled raging wildfires Sunday in drought-parched California, where officials evacuated entire neighborhoods and closed miles of highway in the path of the inferno, which has claimed at least one life. Some 6,000 homes were evacuated as 21 large fires burned in the bone-dry western US state, which is in the throes of a historic drought. A total of 121,000 acres (49,000 hectares of land have burned so far, according to figures provided by the state. (Photo credit Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images)
Burned signs are shown on a road near Lower Lake, Calif., Friday, July 31, 2015. A series of wildfires were intensified by dry vegetation, triple-digit temperatures and gusting winds. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Firefighters tend to a back fire operation at left under smoke from fires along Morgan Valley Road near Lower Lake, Calif., Friday, July 31, 2015. A series of wildfires were intensified by dry vegetation, triple-digit temperatures and gusting winds. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
An air tanker drops a load of fire retardant while fighting a large grass fire, Monday, July 27, 2015, in Elverta, Calif. Firefighters from multiple agencies, with at least a dozen fire engines, several aerial tankers and helicopters battled the flames that burned at least 75 acres and threatened dozens of homes in the suburban community just north of Sacramento. No injuries or cause of the fire have been reported. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Firefighters water down a hot spot while fighting a large grass fire, Monday, July 27, 2015, in Elverta,Calif. Firefighters from multiple agencies, with at least a dozen fire engines, several aerial tankers and helicopters battled the flames that burned at least 75 acres and threatened dozens of homes in the suburban community just north of Sacramento. No injuries or cause of the fire have been reported. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
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