Bellevue Blaze: 3 of 4 Fires Intentionally Set - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Bellevue Blaze: 3 of 4 Fires Intentionally Set

Firefighters now have a large grassfire out and are now mopping up the area where the blaze was burning. Firefighters have been out throughout the night, making sure the blaze doesn't rekindle.

Newschannel 6 crews was on the scene of the massive grass fire all day Tuesday. According to Montague Sheriff Paul Cunningham, the blaze has burned between 10,000 to 12,000 acres. The Texas Forest Service estimates the blaze at only half that amount at about 5,000 acres.

The fire broke out South of FM 174 near Leona Road in Bellevue. Homes on West and East RC Road, Jackson and Applegate were evacuated Tuesday evening. Families were allowed to return home Wednesday.

No homes have burned and one firefighter was treated for heat related injuries but was later released and returned back to work.

The North Central Texas Arson Investigation team was on scene.

"The two fires that were started that grew into the one that came into Montague County appear to be suspicious," said Sheriff Paul Cunningham. Sheriff Kenny Lemons says there were a total four fires that merged into one. Sheriff Lemons says of the four of the fires that started in southern Clay County Tuesday morning, three were intentionally set. He says the physical evidence was destroyed so it might be impossible to link the fires to a suspect.

Volunteer firefighters from Vashti, Bellevue, Bowie, Bluegrove, Scotland, Windthorst, Nocona Hills, Nocona Rural, Chico, Forestburg and Henrietta fought the blaze, along with others and the Texas Forest Service. TFS had a large plane drop retardant on the flames.

Just as fast as firefighters arrived on scene to fight the flames, the Bowie Ladies Auxiliary team arrived at the command post, ready to help.

"We just love taking care of them and providing stuff for the firefighter cause they're out there working hard in the heat fighting the fires for us," said Jenni Studebaker with the Auxiliary team.

Earlier Tuesday afternoon Superintendent Kenny Miller from Gold-burg ISD tells Newschannel 6 they evacuated the high school around 2 p.m. and moved students to their elementary campus at Ringgold.

Stay with Newschannel 6 for continuing updates.

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