Scorched earth remains after Katy wildfires

September 6, 2011 4:24:50 AM PDT
We've seen several wildfires pop up in our area and as you might expect, fires and the high fire danger are keeping local fire departments very busy these days.

Between the dead dry grasses and trees and the winds of the last few days, the fire danger is extreme.

Scorched ground and tire tracks are all that remain of a fire in Katy over the weekend. It's just one wildfire of nearly three dozen in Harris County that were fed by dry vegetation and high winds.

"We were originally dispatched to arcing power lines due to the winds, and they actually had sparked enough that it showered down into the grass," said Asst. Chief Mark Holloway with the I-10 West Fire Department's Station No. 2.

People stopped to look at the damage here, all too glad no homes are nearby.

"We didn't know what to expect. We didn't know how bad the situation was. We thought was all going to be toast," said John Woodstock.

On Monday, firefighters at the I-10 West Fire Department's Station No. 2 were washing the trucks and taking note of the some of the damage to the gear.

"Wear and tear on the equipment, especially when you're talking a lot of off-road equipment -- tires, rims, a lot of scratches and dents to the vehicles," said Asst. Chief Holloway.

This has been a busy season for firefighters all over Texas and even busier for the firefighters dispatched to Bastrop to help beat back the flames of that monster fire.

"Our call volume has been up, but also our mutual aid calls have been up as well, so it hasn't just been in our area," Asst. Chief Holloway said.

At I-10 and the Grand Parkway, evidence that the distance from the trees of Hill Country won't keep southeast Texas safe from wildfire.

"We're in extreme fire danger," said Asst. Chief Holloway.

This fire near I-10 and the Grand Parkway wasn't close to homes, but some of the other fires over the weekend were and firefighters say if fire threatens your home, don't stay to wet down the fence or roof. Instead, they say to get out and let firefighters do their jobs.

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