30-Acre Fire Started By Squirrel - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

9/3/06-Cherokee County

30-Acre Fire Started By Squirrel

Five East Texas volunteer fire departments are called out to a big blaze and officials say it was all started by a squirrel.

The fire in Bullard burned about 30 acres, according to officials.  It happened at the end of County Road 3427 around 12:00 p.m.   Authorities say dry conditions fueled the fire. It engulfed eleven abandoned cars, a motorcycle and the side of a house.

Firefighters say it all started when a squirrel was walking on a power line and got into a transformer. The squirrel caught fire, falling to the ground and igniting the blaze.

Bullard Volunteer Fire Department Chief Keith Newburn says he's seen this happen before. "This time of year, with conditions as dry as they are, it's not really that rare. I've fought several fires in the past that were started by squirrels that got in to transformers," said Newburn.

In addition to the building that was damaged, five other buildings were in danger from the fire. The Texas Forest Service along with volunteer firefighters were able to protect them all.

Lindsay Wilcox, Reporting.  lwilcox@kltv.com

 

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