HAYS COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — At least one home and numerous outbuildings were destroyed along with multiple homes evacuated after a wildfire in Hays County started Saturday. Officials said no more evacuations were in place Sunday.
Officials started responding to the fire, named the Oak Grove Fire, shortly after 3 p.m. Saturday, according to the Hays County Office of Emergency Services website.
The fire was first reported to be near Oak Grove Road near San Marcos.
The 365-acre fire is fully contained, the Texas A&M Forest Service said Thursday. The fire was originally estimated to be 400 acres. The Forest Service added that state resources have been released and the fire is back with the local unit.
The Hays County OES post said the south side of the fire was showing minimal smoke and crews and dozers were working the north side. It also said there was minimal fire activity across the area.
The Forest Service said Sunday the fire did not grow and any flare-ups and visible smoke came from inside containment lines.
On Sunday, officials said firefighters would map the fire in daylight. Walter Flocke, a spokesperson for the Texas A&M Forest Service, said there was no fire growth overnight.
There are no current evacuations, but Flocke said people should stay up-to-date on fire information and be prepared to evacuate if necessary.
He said Sunday’s forecast shows “critically low humidity” and “critical fire weather.” A Red Flag Warning goes into effect this afternoon.
Texas A&M Forest Service said dozers continued along the flanks of the fire Saturday night, and crews, along with aircraft would be on the scene Sunday. Hays County said the fire would be staffed with five dozers, 15 fire engines, a 20-person hand crew and National Guard helicopters for water drops.
As of 2:10 p.m. Sunday, Pedernales Electric Cooperative said it was on site attempting to restore power for those residents affected by the fire.
A 3 p.m. update from the Texas A&M Forest Service Sunday confirmed one home was destroyed alongside a number of outbuildings in the fire, adding officials are continuing to assess damage reports and provide updates as they become available.
The fire is at 95% containment, which means the fire has a 95% perimeter. Flocke said 100% containment is reached when crews are 100% sure that a fire won’t escape the perimeter.
“It’s a degree of assuredness that crews can begin demobilizing and can leave the fire from that point,” Flocke said.
Sunday morning, Flocke said the 20% containment at the time was low—even though the fire wasn’t spreading—because there was so much heat on the fire. Crews were working to mitigate hot spots and cool the area.
City of Kyle Mayor Travis Mitchell said that approximately 30 homes were evacuated Sunday. He also said one home was destroyed, and several others were threatened.
On Saturday, two churches served as evacuation sites in San Marcos and Wimberley.
One Hays County neighbor, Dan Searle, said his family packed and prepared to evacuate in case the fire threatened their home.
“It’s just stuff,” he said. “We need to save ourselves.”
The cause of the fire is under investigation. Flocke said arson investigators and law enforcement will enforce any fines if a person is found to be negligent.
“Folks just need to be careful in any case, no matter what they’re doing,” Flocke said.
Agencies responding to the fire:
- Texas Interstate Fire Mutual Aid System (TIFMAS) strike team
- Hays County Wildland Task Force
- Travis County Task Force
- Emergency Medical Task Force
The National Weather Service Austin/San Antonio said on social media it could see the smoke plume of the fire at its office in New Braunfels.