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Here's where it stands at 3 a.m.: The fire has blackened about 8,000 acres and officials estimate that 60 homes have been damaged or destroyed. A 55-square mile area is evacuated, encompassing more than 2,000 homes.
I could hear the roar and the explosions of residential propane tanks heading toward Black Forest and Shoup Roads. Then came a wave of intense heat followed by a burst of fast-moving, oncoming flames. Firefighters and cops panicked, ordering me to leave: "Take pictures somewhere else," yelled one officer. I'm certain within moments of my escape the fire gobbled up a gas station and Firehouse BBQ restaurant at the corner I was standing on