Though the weather is finally starting to warm up and encourage us to spend more time outdoors again, it brings other potential dangers with it. One of those dangers happens to be wildfires and Texas has already fallen victim to them this year. However, a newly-developed Texas wildfire is so intense it is burning through homes and forcing many evacuations in the area.
According to CBS DFW, the Eastland Complex fire formed yesterday after numerous small fires converged across Eastland County. The rapidly expanding Texas wildfire already destroyed a number of homes, forcing hundreds of local residents to evacuate. As of this writing, the fire burned through 38,000 acres.
The Texas A&M Forest Service said late last night they are working to prevent loss of life and douse the flames. “Crews are focusing on operations related to life safety and structure protection as well as the construction of fireline where possible,” the organization told news outlets. Further, AccuWeather reporter Bill Wadell is tweeting updates about the fire.
“UPDATE: Officials say 475 homes in #Gorman#Texas are being evacuated as the #EastlandComplex Fire is fueled by a “northwestern wind shift”. Families warned to head south. The Lake Leon area is also being evacuated. This is what it looked like moments ago,” one tweet reads.”
Seven hours ago, Wadell provided another update, saying several locations opened up fire shelters. These areas include Eastland First Baptist Church, Eastland FEMA Shelter, Siebert Elementary, and Mountain Top Church.
Around 10 p.m. last night, a spokesperson for the Eastland County Judge Rex Fields said they are aware of three fires. One is near Nimrod, another is north of Rising Star, and the other is near Carbon. Luckily, officials state there are no injuries as of now.
Florida Wildfire Causes 600 People to Evacuate and Prompts State of Emergency
Unfortunately, Texas isn’t the only state lately being plagued by wildfires. A northwestern Florida wildfire caused 600 people to evacuate earlier this month. This prompted local officials to announce a state of emergency.
CBS reported the Adkins Avenue Fire grew to 1,500 acres, with only 30 percent being contained a few weeks ago. The damage was extensive, with 600 homes being evacuated, two being completely destroyed, and 12 receiving extensive damage. Multiple agencies in Bay County and neighboring counties responded to assist in containing the fire.
The Florida Forest Service said the fire is thriving due to its location. It happened to burn in an area Hurricane Michael hit, which felled 72 million tons of trees. As one might expect, the trees served as potent fuel for the flames.
WJHG states a man is now facing charges in connection with the Adkins Avenue Fire. Court documents state the fire resulted from an escaped land clearing pile burn. Theo Adkins is the man in question and now faces charges of unlawful/reckless burning of land. The court also charged him with noncertified burning.