Officials say a mandatory evacuation order issued because of a wildfire in North Texas has been lifted as the threat of fires remains high in the state due to hot temperatures, winds and drought conditions.
Texas A&M Forest Services said the Chalk Mountain Fire has burned about nine square miles, destroyed at least a dozen structures and is about 10% contained. It was not clear how many of the structures were homes, Forest Services spokesperson Mary Leathers said.
Another fire at Possum Kingdom Lake has burned about 500 acres and at least five homes. No injuries have been reported. The National Weather Service issued a fire warning and excessive heat warnings for northern and central Texas and western and eastern Oklahoma for Wednesday.
County emergency management officials did not immediately return a phone call for comment early Wednesday.
No injuries have been reported as a result of either fire.
A combination of near-record and record temperatures approaching 110 degrees combined with breezes gusting as high as 30 mph and drought conditions leave the region ripe for fire, the forest service said.
Four other smaller fires remain active in Bosque County, Kaufman County and Lamar County.
The National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Fire Warning and excessive heat warnings for northern and central Texas and western and eastern Oklahoma for Wednesday.
TEXAS WILDFIRE INCIDENTS
TEXAS BURNING: INSIDE THE STORM
In April 2011, during an extreme drought, four out-of-control wildfires burning in close proximity to each other were dubbed the Possum Kingdom Complex fire. The fires scorched 150,000 acres of parched Texas ranch land and destroyed 150 homes and two churches.
Senior Meteorologist David Finfrock said in the NBC 5 docu-series Inside the Storm: Texas Burning, that at that time the period from August 2010 to July 2011 was the driest 12 consecutive months on record.
Later that summer, in August, a second fire erupted near the lake called the PK 101 Ranch fire. That fire burned more than 6,000 additional acres on the south side of the lake and destroyed nearly 40 more homes.
On Sept. 4, 2011, a massive wildfire erupted in Central Texas. The Bastrop County Complex fire, east of Austin, became the most destructive wildfire in Texas history. More than 1,600 homes and structures were destroyed when 32,000 acres were scorched, including 96% of the 6,565-acre Bastrop State Park. Two people died in the fires.
During that 2011 fire season, the Texas A&M Forest Service said more than 31,000 fires burned more than four million acres across the state and destroyed 2,947 homes.
NBC 5 and the Associated Press.