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Evacuation warnings canceled after deadly plane crash sparks wildfire in Boulder County

At least 1 killed in crash
boulder county plane crash fire.png
Posted at 10:52 AM, Jul 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-18 11:00:42-04

BOULDER COUNTY, Colo. — Evacuation warnings were issued Sunday morning but have since been canceled after a small plane crash sparked a wildfire in Boulder County, according to the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office.

The plane went down near the 10000 block of Lefthand Canyon Drive around 9:41 a.m. Sunday, according to the Boulder County Sheriff's Office. Someone called 911 to report the incident, saying the plane crashed into the ground and then smoke and flames were visible in the area. The sheriff's office confirmed at least one person died.

Residents in the surrounding area had been asked to prepare for possible evacuations, including the towns of Gold Hill and Ward, because of the projected path of the fire, named the Spring Gulch Fire, and the possibility for growth.

However, about an hour later, the sheriff's office gave the "all clear," and those living in the area, including the two towns, were alerted to stand down from evacuation preparations.

RAW: AirTracker7 over Boulder County plane crash

The fire is currently around one-half acre in size, according to the sheriff's office. Officials said crews are still working hotspots, but the threat has been mitigated and the fire is 90% contained as of Sunday night.

The sheriff's office was able to confirm at least one person died in the fire, but because of the unsafe conditions around the plane, they cannot confirm the number of deaths or further information about the plane crash. The Boulder County Coroner's Office will release the identity of the known victim at a later time.

Lefthand Canyon Drive is closed at Lickskillet Drive to Peak to Peak Highway. Authorities are asking the public to avoid the area to give first responders room to work.

The National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration will investigate the cause of the crash.

Editor's Note: This story has been updated with additional information from the Boulder County Sheriff's Office, including the report of a fatality and an updated size of the fire.