Longview 20-acre, 48-hour fire out

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - By Jamey Boyum - email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email | Twitter

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - A 20-acre grass fire threatened homes and caused a road closure just north of Longview on Sunday. Firefighters stayed with the fire most of the night to put the fire out when the wind kicked it back up.

A short stretch of Pliler Precise Road near the intersection of Saint Claire Drive was blocked off due to excessive smoke until Monday morning when the fire had burned itself out - except for a few smoldering stumps.

It took more than 48 hours to change the wooded area from leaping flames to blackened ash. The Judson Volunteer Fire Department plowed fire breaks and fought windy conditions to make sure the wildfire did not cross the road and head for a subdivision just across the street where Robert Harvey lives.

"Yeah, they had it knocked down…had some fire breaks in it but then the wind changed direction over night and it started burning again," he said. "It got pretty bad for a little while there…but they got it under control."

Tom Keith, the Captain of Judson Metro Fire Department has fought the battle before.

"We're checking the perimeter right now because this fire, since Saturday when we got the first call, has jumped the fire line three times," Keith explained. "The worst of it was yesterday and last night. The smoke was so thick you couldn't see one another. There is no moisture....Our biggest concern was Saint Claire. You see these stumps like this? They're going to smoke and smolder and burn for days. But, it looks good. You can walk through it. We've actually done a pretty good job of cleaning the property line up."

The chief has not slept since Saturday and he won't until he is sure the threat is over.

There are still several stumps smoldering in the area. Chief Tom Keith and his men will make intermittent checks until they are completely out, and have a fire break around the biggest stump.

Copyright 2010 KLTV. All rights reserved.