An out-of-control wildfire engulfed swaths of parched land Sunday north of Houston, sending several Texas County firefighters to the scene.
Nearby homes were at risk, but firemen from Roby, Raymondville, Houston and Licking, brought the large blaze under control. Dry conditions, dead grass and winds provided the recipe that caused the problem beginning late Sunday afternoon near Mineral Springs and Horseshoe drives. Houston firefighters had been in the area earlier in the day for a vehicle fire.
A Missouri Department of Conservation bulldozer was called to the area after raging fire shot tall flames into the air. As the winds whipped the fire, a cracking sound was heard across fields. Firefighting vehicle – one and after another – lined up near the fire line, shooting water on the flames and then refilling their trucks using tankers deployed to the property.
Those looking on could hardly believe it was their neighborhood. Lucy and Dewayne Kruse watched from their front yard as the smoke thickened and winds whipped the flames out of control. Others watched from their front lawns as passers-by drove along the road. The billowing smoke could be seen for several miles.
Houston firemen were dispatched Monday morning to return to the scene after the fire rekindled.
Fires also were reported at other locations at Raymondville. A sawdust pile on Highway B at the old Hinton mill caught fire. A grass and trash pile fire also was reported. The sawdust pile later rekindled, said Fire Chief Guy Ceplina.
Licking’s fire department was called to assist Montauk when sparks from a downed electrical line caused a fire Sunday afternoon.