AUTHORITIES: Rusk/Smith Co. fire should be contained by 1pm - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Bowles Creek Bottom Fire 100% contained, 415 acres scorched

5:14 PM UPDATE: The Rusk/Smith County fire that burned 415 acres is now 100 percent contained. No injuries were reported and no structures burned.

10:54 AM UPDATE: We are being told this morning that the fire on the Rusk/Smith County line, also being coined the Bowles Creek bottom fire is 85 percent contained. Authorities say it should be contained by 1:00 pm today. At this time the Texas Forest Service is still doing water drops over hot spots.

5:54 AM UPDATE: Fire officials tell us this morning that all roads are now back open and the residents evacuated have been allowed to return home. Several fire crews remain on the scene, checking for hot spots. No structures were lost in the fire, but the Texas Forest Service did lose a brush truck.

11:15 PM UPDATE: The Smith County Sheriff's Office says that while the large fire on the Smith/Rusk County line is almost out, residents are still evacuated, and several roads are still closed.

In Smith County, County Roads 2115, 2116, and 2113 are still closed tonight. In Rusk County, County Roads 4117, 4116, 4114, and 4120 are also closed. The Smith County Sheriff's Office also tells KLTV 7 tonight that the First Baptist Church on Railroad Avenue in Troup is being used as a shelter for fire evacuees.

SMITH-RUSK COUNTY (KLTV) - The Smith County fire that burned about 350 acres Thursday afternoon is now 99 percent contained, according to Smith County officials.

Thick smoke emerged above the treetops around 3 p.m. Thursday afternoon. Worried residents stood on their porches and on Rusk County Road 4117 as they watched ambulances and fire trucks rush toward the cloud of smoke that hovered over their homes.

Homeowner Angie Martin has lived off of CR 4117 for about five years. She says although she is aware of all the fires in East Texas, she never thought she would have one in her backyard. Despite the amount of chaos behind her property, she feels safe knowing so many people are working on containing the flames. She and her family have already discussed what they will take if they are forced to evacuate; pets and pictures make the top of their list.

Lin Risner, Regional Forester, says he has been working fires for a long time, but he has never seen conditions as dry and hot as they are. And as fires often do, this one is changing directions, jumping county lines and putting others in jeopardy of losing everything.

According to Smith County authorities, about thirteen homes were threatened, but none were destroyed. So far, no injuries have been reported. KLTV will keep you updated with more information on the direction of the fire and its containment.

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