The 11 Most Damaging U.S. Weather Disasters of 2012

By Amelia Hennighausen - 2013-01-03T19:15:32Z

Photograph by Bryan Oller/AP Photo

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Historic Wildfires Burn Colorado

Wildfires in Colorado burned down more than 600 homes and cost insurers $450 million, making 2012 the costliest season for blazes in the state's history. New Mexico suffered its worst-ever fires in May and June.

"This is a scary trend," Bloomberg View editors wrote on July 16. "In the 1960s, Colorado had about 460 fires a year that burned an average of 8,000 acres, according to a report compiled from state forest service records. In the past 10 years, the state averaged about 2,500 fires a year that consumed about 100,000 acres."

Smoke billows from a wildfire west of Colorado Springs on June 23.

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