The devastating Arizona wildfire set a record on Tuesday as the largest in state history, having burned over 469,000 acres, as shown in the latest aerial infrared images of the fire on Tuesday.
The wildfire that has been continuing its disaster through the pine forests of eastern Arizona for more than two weeks has surpassed the 468,000 acres destroyed in the 2002 Rodeo-Chediski Fire in eastern Arizona. That makes the Wallow Fire the largest on record in Arizona.
However, in terms of property losses, the Rodeo-Chidiski was far worse, destroying about 400 homes, said U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Suzanne Flory.
Dozens of homes have been burned and as many as 10,000 people have been displaced by the Wallow Fire since its eruption on May 29 due to a suspected unattended campfire in the White Mountains region.
Due to wind-whipped blaze, most parts of the the Apache Sitgreaves National Forest, about 150 miles east of Phoenix, have got burned, said a Reuters report.
Although evacuation orders were lifted on Sunday for 7,000 to 8,000 residents forced to flee last week from two towns near the border with New Mexico, Springerville and Eagar, authorities have warned returning families that lingering smoke and soot in the air may cause health risks.