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California and the West

Fires Threaten Several Communities

July 27, 1999| From Associated Press

Fires burning through forest, brush and grassland across the West threatened a Montana ranch town Monday and briefly chased people from their homes in a Southern California community.

The Montana blaze had covered 16,000 acres as of Monday and burned to within a mile of Musselshell, population about 50.

Ranchers outside the small central Montana town of Musselshell evacuated horses and cattle Sunday, and some were prepared to leave themselves.

A fast-moving fire in the San Bernardino National Forest near Adelanto, Calif., about 70 miles northeast of Los Angeles, damaged several structures, killed sheep and other livestock and forced several dozen families to leave their homes. Most residents were allowed to return late Sunday.

Elsewhere in Southern California, an estimated 2,000 firefighters had managed to contain about 90% of a blaze that had burned 14,500 acres over the past week north of Santa Barbara.

Firefighters in Utah hoped to complete containment lines Monday night around a fire that charred 3,000 acres of thick oak brush and sagebrush about 27 miles northeast of Salt Lake City.

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