Eastern Fire in Randall County est. 87 acres, 100% contained; Wildfire season outlook

Local News

RANDALL COUNTY, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — The Texas A&M Forest Service said Friday night the Eastern Fire southeast of Amarillo was 87 acres and 100% contained.

The Amarillo Fire Department, the Randall County Fire Department, and the Texas A&M Forest Service responded to a large grassfire early Friday afternoon.

The fire started near SE. 58th Avenue and S. Grand Street and moved southeast toward S. Eastern Street and E. Farmers Avenue. AFD Capt. Cody Snyder said multiple structures were threatened.

Residents were asked to evacuate the area, according to AFD Capt. Snyder, via the Randall County Sheriff’s Office.

Officials originally told MyHighPlains.com the ‘Dove Landing’ subdivision was evacuated. We have since learned the subdivision is called ‘Lonesome Dove.’

Fire crews also asked the public to avoid the area, making it easier for them to work to contain the fire.

Around 3:30 p.m. Capt. Snyder told MyHighPlains.com fire crews were in the mopping up phase of the fire.

The Texas A&M Forest Service gave its final update on the Eastern Fire at 6:24 p.m.

That evening once contained, our crew on the scene saw charred land from north of Horizon Road and stretching southeast toward E. Farmers Avenue near the subdivision.

The Randall County Sheriff’s Office said there is no update on damage from the Eastern Fire at this time. MyHighPlains.com expects to share more information Saturday morning.

KAMR Local 4’s Chief Meteorologist John Harris said wind gusts up to 60 miles per hour out in Randall County Friday afternoon helped fuel the fire, as well as overall dry conditions.

“We’re in a La Niña pattern and this is a temporary climate pattern where it basically puts us in a dry period, day in and day out. Now saying this from time to time, you might get a rain shower moving through or snow storm, but overall, the trend is toward being dry.”

Harris said that does not bode well because the High Plains are coming off a dry fall and summer, compounding our already very high wildfire threat.

Tracking the wildfire threat is something Mark Fox, the meteorologist in charge at the National Weather Service Amarillo takes seriously, with little precipitation so far in 2021.

“So, we are still looking very hard with fire season coming through…January is a very dry month historically anyway,” Fox said on Monday. “So, anything that we get is kind of a bonus, but we do need a little bit more moisture to help out for the fire season. It’s something we’re gearing up for very nicely.”

Below is a look at the fire Friday afternoon from our Roy McCoy Downtown Tower Camera.

This story will be updated as more information is released.

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