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2 small communities ordered evacuated because of wildfire

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Posted at 10:40 AM, Jun 17, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-17 13:47:46-04

Two small communities in east-central Arizona have been evacuated because of a wildfire that continues to grow.

Spokesman Mike Reichling (RY'-kling) of the team managing the fire burning approximately 15 miles (24.1 kilometers) northeast of Payson says La Cienega Estates and Ellison Creek Estates were ordered evacuated Thursday evening.

Reichling says the fire is about 1.5 miles (2.4 kilometers) from the communities, which have 50 to 100 mostly seasonal and weekend homes. There are no reports of structures being destroyed.

Reichling says firefighters are working to keep the fire from reaching forested areas above the Mogollon Rim.

Approximately 1,070 personnel are assigned to the fire, which started June 10 and later merged with a smaller fire.

The total acreage is estimate at 6.6 square miles (17.1 sq. kilometers) of forest, grass and brush.