Zavalla Wildfire

What started as a small grass fire quickly became a large forest fire in Zavalla Wednesday afternoon. Some firefighters tried to smother the growing fire while others evacuated nearby homes. "I couldn't smell the smoke and I hadn't looked out there, but it wasn't but a minute before the smoke was billowing and the fire truck stayed right here and they watered down here beside my house," says Margie Stringer.

Margie was rushed off from her home. She could only gather a few belongings. After evacuating the area authorities realized they had another problem, smoke on highway 69. "At times the smoke was so heavy on highway 69 it reduced the visibility for drivers. We had the highway closed down for some time because the smoke was so bad it blocked the highway and then the fire jumped highway 69, but we got it under control," says Assistant Fire Chief Richard Brunk.

Authorities believe the fire is the work of an arsonist and the Texas Forest Service is offering a 2,000 dollar reward for information leading to an arrest. Meanwhile Stringer is thankful her home was spared. "If the trees ever got on fire my place would go down, thank the Lord it didn't."