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What happened in deadly Arizona wildfire?

  • Communication issues cited in investigative report; 19 firefighters killed in Yarnell Hill blaze
  • Wildfire destroyed dozens of homes, burnt 13 square miles
What happened in deadly Arizona wildfire?

An investigation into the deaths of 19 firefighters killed battling a Arizona wildfire found "no indication of negligence, reckless actions, or violations of policy and protocol" but there were communication breakdowns.

The findings released Saturday by the Yarnell Hill Fire Serious Accident Investigation Team found there were improperly programmed radios and a 30-minute communication blackout before the firefighters died. 

READ MORE: Amid rubble of Yarnell fire, an amazing find

All but one member of the Granite Mountain Hotshots died June 30 battling the Yarnell Hill wildfire, located northwest of Phoenix. According to the report, the firefighters deployed emergency shelters, but they were overcome by flames as hot as 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit. 

The fire, caused by lightning on June 28, burnt 13 square miles and destroyed dozens of homes. It was the deadliest day for fire crews since the September 11, 2001, terror attacks.

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