Two Wildfires With Unknown Causes Burning Through Panhandle Brush Land

Fire investigators haven’t ruled out lighting as a potential cause because of some recent “dry” thunderstorms. And some small towns and cities are at risk.

By Jill AmentAugust 23, 2019 11:04 am

The risk of wildfire is growing across Texas as hot and dry summer weather persists. And in some places, like West Texas and the Panhandle, fires have already consumed thousands of acres, and have even threatened some rural communities.

Mike Dueitt is incident commander for one of the Southern Area Incident Management Teams that’s part of the National Interagency Fire Center – a collaboration of response teams fighting these fires. He says his team first went to fight the Copper Breaks fire in Hardeman County. A couple of days later, a fire started in Foard County.

“Both of these fires are in the Pease River drainage, and in some really rugged country,” Dueitt says. “A lot of cedar and brush land that’s in that drainage and really causing some problems with getting equipment and resources in there to be able to get a control line around these fires.”

What you’ll hear in this segment:

– What may have caused the fires

– How the fires threaten some populated areas, and how residents are notified

– How Dueitt’s team is trying to contain the fires before next week’s hot weather


Written by Caroline Covington.