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Dublin: 9 °C Thursday 24 April, 2014

Wildfires strike Texas and Oklahoma

The fires occurred following dry weather and high temperatures and led to evacuations from homes.

A helicopter drops water on a fire near the entrance to The Cliffs on the south east side Possum Kingdom Lake, Texas on Tuesday, August 30.
A helicopter drops water on a fire near the entrance to The Cliffs on the south east side Possum Kingdom Lake, Texas on Tuesday, August 30.
Image: AP Photo/The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Robby Ferguson

WILDFIRES HAVE STRUCK parts of Texas and Oklahoma, destroying homes and forcing people to evacuate.

Officials say they don’t yet know what ignited the blazes.

However, a summer heat wave and drought have left both states with parched ground and dry vegetation.

Texas Forest Service spokeswoman April Saginor said: ”We’re in severe drought conditions, so just the tiniest little spark can start a wildfire.”

CYFairnews.com says that arson is suspected in the case of one of the fires in East Montgomery, Texas.

The Texas Forest Service warned that the weather could also hamper efforts to contain the fast-moving blaze in North Texas that destroyed at least 20 homes in a lakeside community Tuesday. The fire also was threatening about 125 other homes in the Possum Kingdom Lake area, about 75 miles west of Fort Worth.

Massive blazes in roughly the same area scorched hundreds of thousands of acres and destroyed 160 homes this spring.

In Oklahoma City, Battalion Chief Felton Morgan said blowing embers likely started the fire that destroyed several homes and a church in the city’s northeast overnight.

The fire destroyed 10 to 12 homes and consumed 1,500 acres in a sparsely populated and heavily wooded section of the city.

Four people, including two firefighters, were treated for minor injuries in the Oklahoma City blaze.

Three people were slightly hurt, including two firefighters fighting the blaze in the Possum Kingdom Lake area.

ITV News has a video of the wildfire in one part of Texas:


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