Jul

06

72 acres scorched 180 hay bales burnt

Posted by : Monitor Admin | On : July 6, 2013

Courtesy Photo/Payne Springs Fire Rescue About 180 hay bales were blackened when a grass fire scorched a 72-acre property west of Seven Points owned by June and Joe Gregory. Fire chief A.J. Kirksey speculated a lit cigarette thrown from a car window along Farm-to-Market 85 likely ignited the very dry stubble near the roadside June 29.

Courtesy Photo/Payne Springs Fire Rescue
About 180 hay bales were blackened when a grass fire scorched a 72-acre property west of Seven Points owned by June and Joe Gregory. Fire chief A.J. Kirksey speculated a lit cigarette thrown from a car window along Farm-to-Market 85 likely ignited the very dry stubble near the roadside June 29.

By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer

SEVEN POINTS–One of the first grass fires of the summer scorched 72 acres and an estimated 180 round hay bales Saturday on a property located west of Seven Points near the Race Track Road. A preliminary investigation deduces the fire started where the grass meets the road on Farm-to-Market 85, probably from a lit cigarette being tossed out the window, Seven Points fire chief A. J. Kirksey told The Monitor.
Though not able to attend the fire, Kirksey said that the fire report shows eight fire departments took about five hours to quench the fire, and about 65 firefighters responded with 26 apparatus.
When the first responders arrived, the fire appeared to have just started, however gusts of wind and dry conditions quickly spread sparks and it became a large scattered fire very quickly.
On Monday, the county was under a high fire danger alert from the Texas Forest Service. The Keetch Byrum Drought Index places Henderson County in the 500 to 600 range on an 800 point scale, denoting the driest conditions. The KBDI indicates how much moisture is in the land, ranging from zero, total saturation, to 800, meaning no moisture whatsoever. The index shows the Henderson County mostly within the 500-600 range. However three counties bordering Henderson to the west and south (Navarro, Freestone and Anderson) are averaging in the 600-700 range. Navarro and Freestone have already issued burn bans.

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