All Weather News

Wildfires Continue to Burn in Texas Panhandle

7 Mar 2017, 6:31 pm

Multiple wildfires are still burning across the Texas Panhandle following yesterday’s elevated fire conditions across the Southern Plains.

The Dumas Complex Fire, in Potter County near the city of Amarillo, ignited amid humidity values in the single digits and winds gusting in excess of 50 mph. The fire spread rapidly and threatened hundreds of homes. It is estimated that this fire spread 46 square miles and was 100 percent contained by Tuesday afternoon.

The Perryton Fire, in Ochiltree, Lipscomb and Hemphill counties is burning in grass and brush and is estimated at more than 315,135 acres. The fire moved rapidly and threatened the towns of Higgins and Glazier. Interagency firefighters were able to protect the towns by diverting the fire away from the communities. Two homes have been reported destroyed. This fire Tuesday afternoon was 50 percent contained.

A third fire south in Gray County is estimated to be nearly 145 square miles, and is currently 25 percent contained as of Tuesday afternoon.

A Texas A&M Forest Service spokesman confirmed three firefighters have been injured so far battling the blazes. All have since been released from the hospital.

Texas A&M Forest Service and the National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center predictive services had forecast extreme fire weather for the northwest half of the Panhandle and critical fire weather west of a line from Childress to Midland.

Winds across the Panhandle should subside for Wednesday, but elevated fire conditions return to the area Thursday, Friday and Sunday.

The death toll in Texas remains at four as of Tuesday afternoon. Three deaths in Gray County, and one in Hemphill County.

-Story Image: Jennifer Robertson

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