Tuesday, October 24th, 2017

Wildfire consumes 432 acres

A wildfire threatened three homes and burned 432 acres in the Lelia Lake area last Friday before being brought under control.

Clarendon Fire Chief Jeremy Powell reports that the blaze started from an unknown source of ignition and the cause is under investigation by state and local authorities.

Hedley firemen Neil and Seth Koetting help control a fire near Lelia Lake last Friday. Courtesy Photo / Patrice Wright

The fire started about 0.4 miles west of FM 1260 on County Road V and was reported shortly after 2 p.m. by an employee of the Texas Department of Transportation.

Powell reported that the fire traveled east and northeast crossing FM 1260, burning about two miles and crossing County Road 17. It then burned about another half mile before being brought under control.

Three homes and several other outbuildings and livestock were threatened, Powell said, but no losses were reported except to fences and rangeland.

The weather was constant worry in fighting the fire, which threatened the safety of the Lelia Lake community. The blaze could have caused much more damage due to the conditions at the time with a temperature of 73°F, humidity of 20 percent, and winds gusting 38 to 52 mph from the west and southwest.

Fire was contained by 6 p.m., but Clarendon volunteer firemen remained on scene until 5 a.m.

The Clarendon Volunteer Fire Department responded with 10 units and 21 firemen. The Howardwick Fire Department sent one unit and three firemen, and the Hedley Fire Department sent three units and three firemen.

Also responding were the Memphis Fire Department with two units and six firemen; Donley County motor graders from precincts 1, 3, and 4 along with four county personnel; the Texas Forest Service with one engine, two dozers, and nine personnel; Donley County EMS, the Donley County Sheriff’s Office, and the Department of Public Safety.

Powell also said that the assistance given from numerous landowners was greatly appreciated.

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