Texoma Grass Fires - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Texoma Grass Fires

Wildfires have been sparking all across Texoma.  High winds and scorching temperatures have fueled the flames causing wide spread damage.

More than six fires were reported on Wednesday.  A fire in Archer County burned more than 100 acres.  Archer County Emergency Management Coordinator Kelly Desautel said, "Wind was a major factor that's why it was more long than it was wide because it didn't have enough time to really burn it just took off with the cut wheat".

A combine being driven by George Philipp sparked that fire. Philipp said he looked in his mirror and saw flames.  "Everything was running normal, what happened I don't know.  It's just one of them things.  By the time I got down from the combine it was already taking off".

Despite the close call and charred land, Philipp's wife, Paula, said they have a lot to be thankful for.  She said, "Our family, Olney, a lot of families around here have seen some hard times but the good thing about this is that nobody was hurt.  Whatever burned, most of the wheat was out of the field.  All the houses that could have been burned, people that could have been hurt, nobody was".

In other parts of Texoma grass fires spread quickly, prompting city and volunteer firefighters to call for assistance.  Firefighters from Wichita falls were called to assist at a fire in Burkburnett.
It took 8 fire departments to control the combine fire in Archer County.  Kelly Desautel said, "This is the far side, the end of Archer County so its a lot closer to the Young County Fire departments.  They have a quicker response time so they come in and help with us.  It's all a mutual aid thing here, they come in and help us we come in and help them and it all works real well.

The fire danger remains high and the elevated risk will continue throughout the week.

Jack Lamson, Newschannel 6

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