Armstrong County Judge Holds Meeting to Discuss #MallardFire

CLAUDE, Texas (KAMR) - Tonight Armstrong County Judge Hugh Reed hosted a special County Commissioners meeting to discuss the #MallardFire and update the community on fire crews' response to it.

The fire was last mapped at 75,425 acres and just 23% contained. It has now been burning for eight days. 

Both the Texas A&M Forest Service and Southern Area Incident Management Red Team are working with local fire departments on this fire. 

"You know we don't want to panic the public, but then again we don't want them sitting around naive," said Judge Reed. "Of course you know in Texas law, we can't require someone to evacuate, but we can keep them posted and recommend that."

During the meeting, we heard updates from Southern Area Incident Management, Texas A&M Forest Service, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, local fire departments and more. 

"This community has been so supportive, so receptive of having some additional resources to come in and help their local resources," Southern Area incident Management PIO, Andy Gray, said. "Their EMS and their firefighters here in the community and the area...these local folks have been knocking themselves out for many, many weeks. This is not the start of fire season, so when we come in and just assist them, it just makes everybody's job just much more easy." 

The meeting was open to the public and served as a public forum with a question-and-answer section. 

Many people stood up to thank firefighters for their efforts and ask officials about the work being done to stop the spread of the fire.

During the presentation portion of the meeting, Claude EMS Administrator Howard Heath said they have seen more than 700 people working on the Mallard Fire at one time. 

Texas A&M Forest Service and Southern Area Incident Management gave updates on the fire and the progress fire crews are making.

"We also had a little bit of a blow-out or a slop-over last night over here on the northeast side and crews were able to catch that," Gray said. "We still have hot spots along the fire line and the crews are hot-spotting it, looking for them, putting them out, putting water on it and trying to suppress it."

Crews continue to work with dozers, fire trucks and aircraft as they work to hold the fire south of FM 2272, Highway 287 and southwest of Salt Fork Red River. 

There are no evacuations in place and no road closures in effect for the Mallard Fire.




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