January 11, 2014

Brush fires flare up south of Chickasha

Adam Troxtell
The Express-Star

GRADY COUNTY — Grady County fire personnel had a busy afternoon on Saturday battling back two grass fires south of Chickasha.

The first fire was called in around 1 p.m. from the Agwam area, near County Road 1470 and Highway 81. According to Grady County Fire Chief Perry Wenzel, it began when sparks from a welding job on a fence ignited the grass and quickly spread. It was brought under control within a few hours, but not before about 140 acres were burned.

The second fire was called in at 3 p.m. on ranchland just off of Hwy 19, southeast of Chickasha. A pile of burning trash accidentally set nearby brush ablaze and spread throughout a thicket of trees. It was another few hours before the fire was brought totally under control, and by then 80 acres had been burned.

Low humidity and gusty northwest winds fueled the blaze, and Wenzel said conditions will only get worse Sunday when the wind shifts.

“Today was bad,” Wenzel said. “It’ll be a whole other ball game tomorrow. When it’s this dry, it takes a lot to contain. They travel so fast.”

Wenzel said the fires required about 80 personnel.