Evacuation orders lifted for Buffalo Gap, Fairburn

  • Evacuation orders lifted for Buffalo Gap, Fairburn

Evacuation orders lifted for Buffalo Gap, Fairburn

The fire is 10 percent contained, up from 7 percent. Austin has said the cause is under investigation.

A building has been destroyed as a growing wildfire continued to rage in the Black Hills of South Dakota Tuesday.

About 230 firefighters and other personnel from local, state and federal agencies worked on protecting homes and buildings late Tuesday night, Dec. 12, and into Wednesday, Dec. 13, as high wind gusts hurt the situation. The park is a top South Dakota tourist destination, featuring hills with ponderosa pine and prairie.

The park tweeted Wednesday that the fire's growth and its quick spread through the southeastern end of the park put wildlife in danger, but officials don't know of any animal deaths.

The park says in a statement that the fire has picked up Tuesday evening and due to smoky conditions, firefighters are having trouble tracking it.

Austin said no primary structures have burned; however, several outbuildings have been destroyed, Austin said.

Custer State Park says wildlife are now not at risk.

Custer County Emergency Management director Mike Carter said Wednesday that residents of about 200 homes east of the park have been evacuated or warned to evacuate.

Today, fire crews will continue burnouts around the game lodge area, Austin said.

Winds of about 20 miles per hour, with gusts up to 40 miles per hour, were still causing troubles, however, pushing the fire to the south and southeast.

The statement says the fire is 7 percent contained.

Officials say the towns of Fairburn and Buffalo Gap are still being evacuated.

"We are in our third day and we grew an estimated 31,000 acres last night, bringing us to a total of 35,000 plus acres." says Fire spokeswoman Lydia Austin.