PK Firestorm Continues To Rage - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

PK Firestorm Continues To Rage

CLICK HERE for an interactive map of the affected areas.

Fires continue to burn south of Graham. The PK Complex Fire has scorched close to 150,000 acres so far. Here is the text of the 8:00pm Tuesday Texas Forest Service update:

Stephens, Young, Palo Pinto Counties, PK Complex – The PK East, PK West, Jackson Ranch, and Hohertz fires are burning in close proximity to each other and have been combined into a Fire Complex, with 147,065+ acres burned.  The latest report is that there have been a number of spot fires on the peninsula with no homes lost. Assessment teams have confirmed 56 homes lost at Sportsman World, 37 homes lost at Gaines Bend, 24 homes lost at Hog Bend, and The Cliff area while threatened, has no confirmed losses.  In total, 149 homes and 1 church lost in the PK Complex.  An Incident Command Post is south of Strawn on Hwy 16. TFS resources committed to these 4 fires today include 1 Air Attacks, 1 Helitankers, three 20-person hand crews, 4 Task Forces of dozers and engines, 5 TIFMAS Strike Teams of engines, 4TIFMAS Task Forces of engines and water tenders, 4 MAFF Air Tankers, 2 SEATS, 2 Lead Planes, 4 Heavy Air Tankers, and 2 TXARNG Blackhawk Helicopters.  The community of Graford and the town of Palo Pinto, including the Palo Pinto jail are being evacuated.  There have been reports of ash falling from the sky. Roads into Graford are closed. Highway 16 from Highway 337 to Highway 180 is closed. 

Newschannel 6 cameras were allowed further into the disaster area than ever before Tuesday. The devastation is widespread and shocking. "We've got 1 confirmed house lost in Young County. We've got one on the border of Stephens and Young," said Young County Sheriff Bryan Walls. 

While Newschannel 6 crews were inside the affected area, the winds shifted. Radio traffic between Firefighters indicated that a number of fires flared back up because of the shift. That has emergency crews on-edge. "There's a lot of burned area, but there is still a lot of area that hasn't burned in Young County. We've got a major concern with that," said Walls.

Fire crews from across the country are on the scene, working to attack the blaze. Donations of water, food and other supplies have been pouring in to the command post. Still, Walls wishes something else would head to the area. "We just need the wind to quit blowing and a lot of rain which I don't believe is going to happen," he said. 

Paul Harrop, Newschannel 6

 

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