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Lightning sparks multiple fires Monday afternoon


Jolly volunteer fire fighters put out hotspots along a rock outcropping at the Anderson Road fire Monday afternoon. Lightning spark three blazes in Clay County in a period of about 15 minutes.

By Matt Kelton
Pioneer Sentinel

Scattered thundershowers brought only a trace of rain to Henrietta Monday, but kept fire fighters spread thin through the late afternoon and early evening.

Lightning strikes sparked three grass fires that at one time were burning simultaneously to the north, south and east of Henrietta.

The first fire was reported at about 4:30 p.m. near the intersection of Crox Maddox and Lechner Road in the Riverland area. The fire consumed approximately 20 acres before fire fighters were able to arrive on scene and get it under control.

Henrietta responded first with assistance coming in from Byers, Petrolia and Ringgold.

While en route to the Lechner Road fire, Henrietta VFD was forced to divert trucks to a second fire reported on Sewell Road, off of FM 2847 south of Henrietta, where a small grass fire threatened several structures, including three homes. No structures were lost. Jolly provided mutual aid.

While fire fighters were working to get the blazes extinguished, a third lighting strike sparked what would be the largest fire of the day, an estimated 100 acres on the Diaz Murray Ranch off of Anderson Road. The fire was reported at about 4:45 p.m.

Rough terrain made fighting the Anderson Road fire more difficult as the blaze burned into an area of heavy Post Oak and rocky outcroppings.

With the Sewell Road fire out, and crews with cattle sprayers mopping up hot spots at the Lechner Road fire, fire fighters concentrated on the Anderson Road blaze. Vashti, Bellevue, Henrietta, Ringgold, Bluegrove and Jolly had units at the fire. Precinct 3 provided a water truck and dozer operator George Koetter cut fire guards.

The Lechner Road fire burned approximately 20 acres, while the Sewell Road fire blackened 10 acres.


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The Pioneer Sentinel is an online newspaper designed to deliver the news of Clay County, Texas, in a concise and community-friendly format.

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