N.M. Silver Fire grows to 57 square miles

SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) - A raging blaze in southern New Mexico's Gila National Forest has grown to 57 square miles just as firefighters finish setting up protections around a nearby historic mining town.

Officials said Thursday that persistent hot and dry weather over the Silver Fire caused it to expand another 10 square miles overnight.

The wildfire is expected to burn more acreage throughout the week spilling smoke into nearby towns.

Incident management team supervisor Keith Halloran told the Silver City Daily Press (

) that even if embers or other fire enter the fuel break around Kingston, there should be no impact to the village.

Crews worked to build protection the Kingston and Royal John Mine areas as soon as the lightning-caused fire started June 7. More than 500 firefighters are battling the blaze.

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