The residents of Mayer have been given the OK to get back to their homes Thursday, as officials say suppression efforts on the eastern flank of the Goodwin Fire are appearing to hold.
For the first time since the blaze broke out Saturday afternoon, fire managers appeared to be optimistic about gaining an upper hand on the fire, which has burned nearly 25,000 acres in the Prescott National Forest.
While the authorities were hopeful that the worst is over, Gov. Doug Ducey urged the public not to interfere with the firefighting efforts by flying drones over the affected areas.
Col. Frank Milstead, director of the Arizona Department of Public Safety, said there were at least two suspected looters in Mayer on Wednesday night, adding to the difficulties there.
“Last night we arrested two burglars in the Mayer area before we opened up the town,” he said Thursday. “We have security within Walker and within Breezy Pines now doing the same thing, trying to keep these people out.
“I will tell you that I find it incredibly amazing that someone wakes up in the morning and says, ‘Hey, they’re doing an evacuation, so let’s go do burglaries.’ But those people exist,” Milstead said.
He said patroling for looters was needed after the Yarnell Hill Fire in 2013.
“A lot of people call them…
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