Home Headlines Largest wildfire in Texas history kills at least one

Largest wildfire in Texas history kills at least one

by sanmigueltimes
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At least one person is dead as a result of the fires that have swept across north Texas.

According to CNN, a wildfire burning across the Texas Panhandle has scorched more than 1 million acres, making it the largest recorded blaze in state history, officials there say.

The Smokehouse Creek Fire is one of five wildfires burning in north Texas, according to the Texas A&M Forest Service. The blazes have caused thousands of evacuations and power outages and left at least one person dead.

The forest service says that the Smokehouse Creek Fire, which ignited Monday, quickly spread due to heavy winds, extremely dry grass and unseasonably warm temperatures across north Texas.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration for 60 counties, which will allow fire response resources to be quickly deployed to areas affected by the wildfires.

“Texans are urged to limit activities that could create sparks and take precautions to keep their loved ones safe,” Abbott said in a statement. “I also want to thank the brave firefighters and first responders who are working tirelessly to protect their fellow Texans.”

Joyce Blankenship, 83, died at her house in Stinnett, Texas, on Wednesday, Feb. 28th, as the Smokehouse Creek Fire swept through it.

Thousands remain without power in parts of the Panhandle, though reports of power outages have been declining.

Residents in Fritch, a city of about 2,000 located in Hutchinson and Moore counties, were without water and power. The city pleaded in a Facebook post for an industrial generator “to help get our water back up.”

Residents have been posting wildfire updates in a public Facebook group, through which locals have been coordinating assistance to move their livestock, borrow equipment, and find and provide shelter and donations.

Several towns and communities were under mandatory evacuations in the Amarillo region, according to the National Weather Service:

  • Skellytown
  • Wheeler
  • Allison
  • Briscoe

Residents in other towns had the choice to evacuate.

San Miguel Times

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