Fallin Declares State Of Emergency Due To Wildfires

Tuesday, March 7th 2017, 10:35 am
By: News 9

Gov. Mary Fallin issued a State of Emergency executive order for 22 counties after an outbreak of wildfires and the fire weather conditions in the state. 

The executive order is in effect for 30 days and can be amended to add more counties, if necessary. As part of the order, state agencies will be allowed to make emergency purchases to help fight wildfires in their respective area.

At least two people have died as a result of multiple wildfires. The Kansas Highway Patrol confirmed the death of an Oklahoma City man due to the northwestern Oklahoma wildfires crossing state lines.

Authorities say Corey Holt, 39, was backing up his semi on Kansas Highway 34 near U.S. Highway 160 because smoke and ash were completely blocking his vision forward. While backing up, the trailer jackknifed off the side of the road. Holt got out of the semi but could not escape the overwhelming smoke.

This fatality is the latest in a terrible few days for some Oklahoma families. The Woodward emergency manager estimated somewhere between 70,000-100,000 acres were burned. Also, at least four lived-in homes were lost in Harper County.

The Oklahoma Forest Service has confirmed the death of a 61-year-old Harper County woman. She was identified as Kade Koch.

The counties included in the governor’s declaration are: Alfalfa, Beaver, Blaine, Cimarron, Custer, Dewey, Ellis, Garfield, Grant, Harper, Kay, Kingfisher, Logan, Major, Noble, Osage, Payne, Pawnee, Roger Mills, Texas, Woods and Woodward.