On Sunday afternoon, a fire broke out in Hutchinson County near Fritch, Texas. At least 100 homes were destroyed as the fire burned through the night. Firefighters had the flames 85 percent contained by early Wednesday morning, but about four square miles had to be evacuated.
Initial investigative reports indicate that the fire may have been started by a burning shed. Currently, there’s no word on how that shed initially caught fire. An estimated 2,100 people and 1,300 homes were impacted by this fire, which is still being contained by first responders. Evacuees were sent to area schools and churches to take shelter.
1,500 Acres Destroyed
The fire has destroyed about 1,500 acres of land. According to NBC News, approximately 100 emergency service personnel were dispatched to fight the blaze. Officials with the Texas Forestry Service were also scheduled to conduct water drops by aircraft to assist the firefighters on the ground. Families are expected to be returning to what’s left of their homes and property on Wednesday morning.
Fire Danger in Texoma
Last week, we reported on a fire in Oklahoma that killed one person and destroyed at least 20 homes. With the dry heat and high winds that are characteristic for Texoma during this time of the year, fire danger can be incredibly high. Any small flame can quickly turn into an unstoppable blaze, and citizens are urged to exercise extreme caution this spring and summer. Many counties in Texas and Oklahoma are currently under burn bans. Citizens are even asked to be mindful when barbequing in the backyard. All it takes is one spark to set fire to dry grass. Citizens in Wichita Falls are well aware of the county’s drought status too, and fighting fires takes a lot of water.
Grass Fires are Damaging Too
Ranchers across Texoma know that grass fires can be incredibly devastating. Even if no residential structures are damaged, grass fires can cause irreparable damage to ranch land and grazing areas. The cost to repair and replace fences can be astronomical. Reseeding costs, loss of grazing, loss of cattle production and a permanent loss of value to the land can all be expensive consequences of grass fires. Fire damage cases are time sensitive, so if you have been injured or suffered property damage due to a fire, contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible.