Fire rages in Palo Pinto County

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June 24 – PALO PINTO – The Dempsey Fire had grown to 3,000 acres by 11 a.m. Friday and was 15% contained, county emergency management coordinator Mistie Garland reported.

“No one is injured and no structural damage” was reported, she said.

Mineral Wells Fire/EMS Chief Ryan Dunn said shortly before noon that his crews were among the departments that responded.

“It will take time for containment,” he said. “The land is rough and the fuels are heavy. Hopefully with air support we can contain it.”

The fire was first reported on Thursday afternoon about 10 miles south of Graford. Garland said an initial investigation indicated a welder may have started the fire, but she added that “it’s not 100 per cent confirmed”.

Air traffic continued to be restricted in the mountainous region as firefighting planes brought water to the blazes. Three firefighter planes, three single-engine air tankers, a helicopter and an air attack platform were on hand to continue water drops, with drought and weather contributing to the fire’s resistance to control.

Speaking of the route, Garland did not have an exhaustive list of responding agencies.

“We have Palo Pinto County,” she said. “We have Hood County, Erath County… Parker (county) was here last night, Texas Forest Service.”

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