Wildfires Burning Up Texas

3-13-06 - State officials say at least eleven wildfires continued burning today in the South Plains and Texas Panhandle. Authorities say at least seven people died and nine others have been injured, including several firefighters, in blazes and accidents since the weekend.

Overall, Governor Rick Perry's office reports about 663,000 acres have burned. An aide says fires continued burning Monday over roughly 530,000 acres. Rachael Novier says crews responded to fires in
Carson, Childress, Gray, Hartley, Hutchinson, Moore and Wheeler counties and evacuated hundreds of homes. Novier says one volunteer from Howardwick was critically injured while battling a blaze in Gray County.

The total acreage from the weekend fires has eclipsed the
445,000 acres that burned over a span of a couple weeks in December and January. At that time Perry declared a state drought disaster.