Via Eagle Communications owned Double Q Country Radio in Alliance –
The Incident Command Team managing the firefighting effort in Dawes County says 25,000 acres have been burned in the two fires south of Chadron. The Management team says over 100 people were on the ground fighting the blaze early Thursday morning and more ground and air personnel have been ordered.
Thus far there is zero percent containment.
Firefighters from Crawford, Harrison, Chadron, and Rushville made the intial respnse. Scottsbluff, Alliance, and Hemingford has been called to assist.
Scottsbluff Fire Chief Dana Miller says the Scottsbluff Fire Hall is also being used as a base to provide donations of supplies needed by firefighters. Along with water and gatorade, the firemen also need bandanas, eye drops (visine, etc.), granola bars, protein bars, etc, chap stick, Tylenol packs, socks, and (white) t shirts.
The Alliance Chamber of Commerce collected a pickup load of supplies in less than 90 minutes Thursday morning from Alliance residents and quickly transported the donations to Hay Springs.
Mike Pelster at Mike’s Husker Stuff at 1607 Broadway in Scottsbluff is donating five cases of T-shirts, but says more are needed. He will take donations of T-shirts Large through XXX until 3:45 p.m., (today) when the truck donated by NTC will take supplies gathered from Pelster and at the fire hall to the firefighters at Crawford.
Dawes County Attorney Vance Haug confirms a 64-year-old female died during the evacuation process in southern Dawes County last night. Ronni Davis died of apparent natural causes (cardiopulmonary event) after rescue personnel and Sheriff’s deputies attempt to resuscitate her.
The fire does not pose an imminent threat to Chadron but Chadron State College and the Chadron Public school district have canceled classes for the rest of the week. A ranch south of Chadron has been destroyed and a cabin has been burned in another fire north of Hay Springs, also started by dry lightning.
Highway 385 to Chadron is open, but traffic has been reduced to one lane.
Hay is needed for six horses being sheltered at the Dawes County Fair Grounds. The horses were evacuated from the fires in the area. About 30 horses from Chadron State Park are being evacuated to the fairgrounds and will be in need of hay as well. If you have hay to share, it can be taken to the Dawes County Fair Grounds.
The fires were started by lightning from a Tuesday afternoon thunderstorm, and are burning on public and privately owned lands.
At this time the Sheridan County S.O. is asking for an immediate evacuation for the following areas:
SOUTHERN AND WESTERN PORTIONS OF METCALF STATE WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT
LOCATED IN NORTHWESTERN SHERIDAN COUNTY…TO INCLUDE RESIDENCES
AS FAR WEST AT BEAVER WALL ROAD.
A WILDFIRE IS PROGRESSINGWESTWARD IN THE METCALF STATE WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA. THIS
EVACUATION ORDER WILL REMAIN IN PLACE UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE