HUNTSVILLE, Texas (FOX 26)
Several fire departments and deputies with the Walker County Sheriff's Office are responding to a massive fire ten miles north of Huntsville.
The fire was sparked when a tire blew out on a hay trailer that was on FM 980. The resulting sparks set the grass on fire, as well as the surrounding area.
Texas A&M Forest Service estimates 600-700 acres have burned inching closer to residence areas. At least 50 homes are still under evacuation orders. Early reports suggest at least four homes were caught in the fire.
The dispatcher tells FOX 26 News that the fire is near FM 980 near FM 2628 with a creek nearby that is helping contain the flames. The fire was about 80% contained by Monday night.
Among the fire departments helping in the effort include Huntsville, Crab's Prairie, New Waverly Fire Dept and Dodge. The Texas Forestry Service and the U.S. Forestry Service is also assisting in the containment efforts by providing some bulldozers.
Shelter is set up at Walker County Storm shelter on Hwy 75 north for those in need.
So far several thousand retardant drops have been made on the fire. Check out this video posted by Texas A&M Forest Service:
Tanker 164 and 101 retardant drops
We've combined footage of both heavy tanker drops on #NorthSideFire in Walker County. Tanker 164/RJ85, the first 3,000-gallon drop followed by Tanker 101/MD87 dropping another 3,000 gallons.DC-10 in approx. 30 min. out.Video provided by TFS Shannon Holmes. #txfire #txwxPosted by Texas A&M Forest Service on Monday, October 19, 2015