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Tuesday, September 27, 2022
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Koonce Fire Burns More Than 3,700 Acres


Koonce fire burns over 3,700 acres | Image by Wichita West VFD

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The Koonce Fire burned nearly 3,800 acres in Wichita County before it was finally fully extinguished last Friday, according to reports from the Texas A&M Forest Service Incident Viewer.

The fire initially started on July 6. Due to the dangers presented by the fire, U.S. 287 was closed. The Iowa Park Volunteer Fire Department needed air support to come to the area to aid in the containment of the then-spreading wildfire.

The Witchita West VFD stated that the fire spread along the southern side of U.S. 287 along the railroad lines. The fire was estimated to run along Burnett Ranch Road to the Mile 6 Cut Off point.

By July 9, the fire had been fully contained by units of the Wichita West Volunteer Fire Department and Wichita County Sheriff’s Office.

Per Texas A&M Forest Service, the fire was fully out by July 15.

No evacuations or deaths were reported, and no reports of damages to any structures have surfaced.

The Koonce fire is only one of at least seven wildfires to break out across Texas this month due to extreme heat. The arid and extremely hot conditions across Texas have increased the outbreaks of wildfires as residents struggle to manage the heatwave.

One particular fire, known as the 1148 Fire, broke out in Palo Pinto County just west of the Fort Worth area and consumed over 500 acres as of Tuesday, July 19. The fire has required many residents to evacuate from their homes for safety.

Another fire, the Chalk Mountain Fire near Somervell County, has so far burned over 4,000 acres southwest of Fort Worth, as reported by The Dallas Express. Due to many people being displaced from their homes, the American Red Cross has opened an area for temporary shelter for those in need. As of Tuesday, it has been reported that both the 1148 Fire and the Chalk Mountain Fire were 10% contained.

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