Wildfires burn through Tyler County

Wildfires burn through Tyler County
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

COLMESNEIL, TX (KTRE) - What began as a series of small brush fires on Saturday, continued to burn well into Sunday afternoon across parts of Colmenseil. The fire danger was less than one mile from the Lake Amanda subdivision entrance. For resident Kirwin Drouet, the scene was too close to home.

"Terrifying. I mean, our first thoughts were our animals. We have three dogs and there are a couple of neighbor dogs and my neighbor wasn't home," said Kirwin Drouet, Lake Amanda resident.

A sheriff's deputy went door-to-door notifying residents of the approaching blaze, leaving the decision to evacuate up to them. For Drouet and his wife, the decision was a no-brainer.

"We didn't want to get locked in here, there's only one way in and out and that was the danger," Drouet said.

Several crews responded, including the Texas A&M Forest Service, who said the fires covered approximately 520 acres.

"The fire is contained and we're out here making sure that the fire does not get back out across the control lines," said John Matel, Texas A&M Forest Service.

And with more heat in store, the push to stay safe continues to increase.

"Things are getting more critical in terms of fire danger and we'd sure like to advise anybody out there that has any burning to do to be very, very careful. Make sure to stay with the fire until it's out," Matel said.

For Drouet, it's an ordeal he's glad is over.

"This place has been around for a long, long time and it'd be a real tragedy to lose it...a lot of history, exactly," Drouet said.

Texas A&M Forest Service officials say the cause of the wildfires is still under investigation.

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