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Two fires raked across Colorado’s southeast plains last week, consuming 10,000 acres, destroying dozens of homes (above) and indirectly killing three people. The prairie fires were a reminder of how dangerous plains blazes can be, reports the Rock Mountain News.

“In the right weather conditions, prairie fires can move almost as fast as a person can drive,” 100 times faster than forest fires, Ed Wright, board member of the National Wildfire Suppression Association, said. “They require a whole different set of tactics than forest fires.”

Wright said he recalled a prairie fire in Nevada that began with a lightening strike and covered 30,000 acres in just five hours.