Texas Wildfire Situation 4/14/11, Critical to Extremely Critical

Here’s the latest post from the Texas Forest Service. We may be in for a very bad day.

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Current wildfire status – April 14, 2011 – 8:48 a.m.

** Critical to extremely critical fire weather conditions are likely over large portions of Northwest and North Texas today. **

Recent response:

· Yesterday (Wednesday, April 13), Texas Forest Service responded to 10 fires burning 1,655 acres, including new large fires in Hardin, Shelby and Sutton counties.

· In the past seven days TFS has responded to 75 fires burning 385,246 acres.

· The Roper Fire in Brewster County is 100 percent contained at 41,000 acres.

· The Cotton Ranch Fire in Sterling and Tom Green counties is 100 percent contained at 2,930 acres.

· 194 Texas counties are reporting burn bans.

New large fires from Wednesday:

POST OAK, Hardin County. 750 acres, 90 percent contained. Four homes and four outbuildings threatened. The fire is 11 miles northwest of Kountze.

SOUTH FORK, SHELBY County. 145 acres, 90 percent contained. The fire is 2 miles northeast of Center.

McPHERSON, Sutton County. 300 acres, 20 percent containment. The fire is 21 miles southwest of Sonora.

Uncontained fires from previous days:

LUCAS, Stephens County. 300 acres, 90 percent containment. Multiple structures were evacuated. The fire is 12 miles southeast of Breckenridge.

SCHEZZOW, Kerr County. 400 acres, 90 percent contained. Two structures were threatened and saved; one outbuilding, one vehicle and one bobcat skid-steer were lost. The fire is 22 miles west of Kerrville.

ENCINO, Tom Green County. 12,659 acres, 90 percent contained. Heavy air tankers and numerous ground resources assisted on this fire 13 miles west of San Angelo. Ten homes threatened and saved. Two homes were threatened and received damage.

COOPER MOUNTAIN RANCH, Kent County. 14,000 acres, 50 percent contained. Twenty-five homes, outbuildings and oil facilities are threatened. Evacuations occurred.


· CANNON, Pecos County – 9,248 acres, 40 percent contained.

· SMOKEY MTN – Burned into the Cannon Fire, acreage is combined.

· DRH, Pecos County – 18,412 acres, no containment. One home was threatened and saved.

· LITTLE SMOKEY – 4,593 acres, no containment. This complex of fires is burning just south of Iraan. No evacuations or losses. Interstate 10 was temporarily closed.

ROCKHOUSE, Presidio and Jeff Davis counties. 164,815 acres, 70 percent contained. 23 homes and two businesses were reported destroyed in the Fort Davis area. Eight TIFMAS Type 1 engines and four tenders are assisting with the fire, as well as numerous air tankers and helicopters. A base camp for hundreds of firefighters has been set up at the Fort Davis State Park.

SWENSON, Stonewall, King, and Knox counties. 103,384 acres, 90 percent contained. The fire is burning 3 miles north of Swenson. Four TIFMAS strike teams of engines and numerous TXDOT graders and dozers are assisting TFS.

HICKMAN, Midland County. 16,500 acres, 98 percent contained. Thirty-four homes were destroyed,; 62 homes were damaged on this fire south of Midland.

KILLOUGH, Garza County. 54,000 acres, 90 percent contained. Sixty homes were saved and one destroyed on this fire six miles south of Post.

CAMP BOWIE, Brown County. 3,355 acres, 95 percent contained. The fire is burning on the Camp Bowie Military Reservation south of Brownwood.

Prevention messages:

· Obey outdoor burning bans. Don’t burn trash or debris when conditions are dry or windy. Unsafe burning of leaves, brush, household trash and other debris is the No. 1 cause of wildfires in Texas.

· Keep lawn mowers and agricultural equipment in proper working condition and avoid rocks and other materials which might cause a spark.

· To report suspicious activities, call the Arson Hotline at (888) 501-3850. If possible, safely obtain an accurate description of the person and/or vehicle (including the license number) before calling the hotline.

· Humans cause more than 90 percent of all wildfires. Do not weld or cut without a spotter, a water source and a shovel.

Marq Webb
Public Information Officer
Texas State Lone Star Incident Management Team

About M.J.Deare

I am a writer, actively researching topics of interest. I am also a graduate of the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, with a degree in English, and have a master's degree from the University of Memphis. Born in New Orleans, I lived there until moving to northwest Arkansas and from there to Memphis, Tennessee. My husband and I currently reside in The Woodlands, Texas.
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