Nightly News | August 18, 2012
>>> to the wildfires in the west where firefighters are battling dozens of blazes tonight. while the threat has receded in washington state , today a huge wildfire is bearing down on two towns in idaho . one of them is featherville. that's where nbc's mike taibbi is followinghe story for us tonight. mike, good evening.
>> reporter: good evening, lester. that's not fog around me. that is smoke. this is right at the line where the huge wildfire that started in the boise national forest will meet civilization meaning houses and humans. the humans have gotten the mandatory evacuation order. we have to leave after this report. as for the houses, they are in imminent danger. idaho 's most dangerous wildfire in years has been lurching steadily toward the mountain enclave of featherville. about a thousand homes and other buildings whose owners got straight talk today.
>> it will not look the same in the next couple three days as it looks today. we will do everything we can do out there as firefighters to make sure the community, the hills, the rivers are the same.
>> that meant the mandatory evacuations would be soon ordered. a number of emergency shelters werelready i plac 63-year-old suzanne durant is ready to leave. the cabin where she lived alone for years since her husband died enveloped in smoke, correctly in the path of the fire spl this whole thing is surrounded by spripg le sprinklers.
>> reporter: these are days of reality for kate baldwin, too. she says she'll keep working until she has to leave and hope this fire spares her home.
>> the fire will go around us, if it needs to, over us, above us. it will pass us.
>> reporter: in an average year there are tens of thousands of western wildfires, but this has been a brutal season. 6.4 million acres destroyed when the ten-year average is around 5 million and it's still mid august. in the past days and weeks the taylor bridge fire in washington has consumed 23,000 acres and 70 homes. the human cost of fighting the fires is ever present. idaho lost 20-year-old firefighter anne vesith this week. she was killed by a falling tree while trying to keep people like suzanne durant from losing so much that matters.
>> my husband's ashes are on this mountain. my dogs are buried behind the garage. this is very importa to me.
>> reporter: this has not been the fastest moving fire. there haven't been fierce winds. yesterday the fire moved only one mile. but it is still moving and growing. this community and down the road a couple of others, pine is down the road, remain in serious peril. lester?