Alto-area fire at 80 percent containment

CHEROKEE COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - The fire burning near the city of Alto has burned 1,900 acres and is 80 percent contained, according to the Texas Forest Service. However, officials say the danger is far from over.

"We don't want to call it controlled until we are sure nothing is going to get out and it's so difficult with this kind of vegetation," said Jan Amen with the Texas Forest Service. "Trees can have roots burning underneath the ground that we're not even aware of, so this takes a little bit more work than if this were to be a fire in another part of Texas."

Firefighters managed to have the blaze contained Monday morning, but it jumped lines in the afternoon.

Downed electrical lines, loose animals, and heavy smoke are big concern for fire officials.

"The fire weakens the tree at the base," Amen said. "The roots are compromised and they can go down at any time. Branches can go down on you without notice."

Det. Brad George with the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office said no structures have burned and the biggest issue is that wind speeds are higher.

Forecasts showed wildfire threats would be greater on Tuesday, but so far no major fires have been reported on the Deep East Texas area.

We're told firefighters actually fought fire with fire on the Alto blaze.

Crews put fire on the ground some distance away from the flames, letting the two fires blacken the ground to keep the fire from spreading.

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