Breckenridge Texan

Breckenridge, Stephens County firefighters battling wildfire southeast of Caddo

Breckenridge, Stephens County firefighters battling wildfire southeast of Caddo
March 17
23:17 2022

By Tony Pilkington and Carla McKeown/Breckenridge Texan

As wildfires and structure fires raged out of control in several counties south of Breckenridge today, Thursday, March 17, local fire departments were dispatched to the southeastern part of Stephens County to battle a blaze on the Link Ranch, according to the Breckenridge Fire Department’s Facebook page.

The wildfire is being fought by the BFD, Caddo Volunteer Fire Department, Wayland Volunteer Fire Department and the Hubbard Creek Volunteer Fire Department. The fire is located off of County Road 104, about eight miles north of Strawn and six miles south of U.S. Highway 180 East, Stephens County Sheriff Kevin Roach said.

The fire departments were waiting on bulldozers to arrive late Thursday evening to assist with stopping the fire, Roach said.

According to various news reports throughout the region, Eastland County has had several wildfires burning today, as well as several structure fires in downtown Ranger. Residents in Carbon, Gorman, Rising Star and the Lake Leon area have been told to evacuate.

A Texas A&M Forest Service Twitter page reported at about 10:30 p.m. that the “Eastland Complex” fire has burned more than 38,000 acres and is 0% contained. “Crews are focusing on operations related to life safety and structure protection as well as the construction of fireline where possible,” according to the post.

A map on the site shows wildfires in five locations in Eastland County.

Additionally, earlier in the day, at least two buildings in Ranger — the three-story Second Baptist Church building and the old police department building — were on fire, according to the newspaper Eastland County Today’s Facebook page. Other buildings there may also have caught fire.

According to the Eastland County Today, shelters have been set up at Eastland’s First Baptist Church,  405 S. Seaman St.; the FEMA Dome Community Safe Room at Siebert Elementary School, 100 Little Maverick Trail; and the Mountain Top Church/ Myrtle Wilks Community Center, 1498 Interstate 20 West (Frontage Road) in Cisco.

Other fires have been reported in the region, including in Taylor, Brown and Jones counties. According to the Texas Wildfire Incident Report System website, there are 40 fires burning in Texas, destroying almost 70,000 acres so far.

According to the National Weather Service, high winds and dry conditions are expected to continue in the area on Friday, March 18.

 

Cutline, top photo: A wildfire burns on the Link Ranch in southeastern Stephens County. Breckenridge and Stephens County firefighters are on the scene, battling the blaze. (Courtesy Photo)

 


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