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Residents back, U.S. 12 reopens near Lolo fire

U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., looks at the remains of a Lolo Creek home Wednesday. (Associated Press)
U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., looks at the remains of a Lolo Creek home Wednesday. (Associated Press)

LOLO, Mont. – Fire managers at the Lolo Creek Complex of fires near the town of Lolo have reopened U.S. Highway 12 and allowed residents to return to about 250 homes.

Officials ended the evacuation and opened the road at 6 a.m. Saturday, fire spokeswoman Dixie Dies said. But, she said, there’s still a lot of work to do because the fire is burning strong through timber on the north edge. Erratic winds are expected today, with gusts up to 40 mph.

About 650 personnel are assigned to the blaze and more are arriving, she said. Nine helicopters are also taking part.

The 17-square-mile complex of fires that started by lightning Aug. 18 is 40 percent contained. Five homes have been destroyed.



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