Hundreds evacuated over East Texas wildfires

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June 20, 2011 6:10:38 AM PDT
About 300 East Texas residents have been evacuated to escape a wildfire blamed on hunters doing target practice

Billy Ted Smith, who's emergency management coordinator for Jasper, Newton and Sabine counties, says residents who evacuated Sunday could be allowed to return later Monday.

Smith told The Associated Press that eight camp houses have been destroyed in the 3,500 acre fire that began Saturday. The wildfire is 30 percent contained.

Smith says the fire was apparently started by hunters shooting at old butane tanks for target practice, with the bullet sparks causing the wildfire.

No injuries have been reported.

Smith says a park road in Jasper County, between Sam Rayburn Reservoir and the Toledo Bend Dam, is closed.

The Texas Department of Transportation had no major highway closures Monday.

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