Red Bird Road Fire

Red Bird Road Fire

A fire, that started as burning trash, destroyed a barn and nearly reached a home in Smith County this afternoon.

The blaze started on Red Bird Road, also known as County Road 21, in the Chapel Hill area.

KLTV 7's chopper spotted the fire while surveying surrounding East Texas wildfires.

McKinley Mosley was burning trash when the wind blew a piece of burning garbage across the yard. He said the fire caught onto the dry ground and started heading toward his barn. The structure was torched in a matter of minutes.

"[The trash] was burning slow and I just turned my back and it skipped about 15 feet from me and kind of took off on all the dry pine needles on the ground," Mosley said.

The Chapel Hill Fire Department put a stop to the fire before it consumed more than the barn. Still, the total loss is estimated at $5,000.

"It didn't get into this gentleman's house, but it was just a matter of feet from getting into his house and burning his house down," said Smith County Assistant Fire Marshal Connie Wasson.

Wasson said the county may not be under a burn ban but that doesn't mean people should be any less careful.

"As a fire marshal's office we shouldn't even have to tell people not to burn. The winds are way too high, it's too hot and dry. The temperatures are up in the 100 degree mark," Wasson said.

She warned, each time people burn, they're risking more than their own homes and safety.

"You put fire fighters in bunker gear and you're taking the chance of them going into heat exhaustion or heat stroke, just fighting these fire for everyone,"  Wasson said.

She said Smith County could see a burn ban in a matter of days if there isn't significant rainfall by the middle of this week.

Smith county officials are also warning residents to be very cautious before setting off any fireworks in the coming weeks.

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