Firefighters Make 'Significant Progress' Battling Logan County Wildfire

Tuesday, May 6th 2014, 8:29 am
By: News 9

Fire crews say they have made significant progress Tuesday morning battling a massive wildfire in Logan County that sparked Sunday afternoon.

According to Guthrie Fire Chief Eric Harlow, as of Tuesday morning, fire crews have contained 90 percent of this wildfire. The Oklahoma State Forestry Service created a trench line and prevented the fire from spreading past Brown Avenue, which is the furthest point of the fire.

As the winds died down overnight, firefighters were able to put out the hot spots. Dozens of firefighters arrived early Tuesday morning to relieve the firefighters who have been battling the blaze since 10 p.m. Monday.

This massive grass fire reportedly started out as part of a controlled burn around 4:30 p.m. Sunday in the area east of Interstate 35 near Forest Hill Dr. and Air Depot. By Monday morning, crews were able to contain about 75 percent of the fire, according to Chief Harlow.

However, throughout Monday, crews were busy putting out hot spots and more residents were evacuated.

5/5/2014 Related Story: More Residents Evacuated As Logan Co. Grass Fire Rekindles

Johnnie Ray Knox, 56, was killed in the wildfire. More than 30 structures were destroyed, including at least ten homes. Governor Mary Fallin is issuing a burn ban for 36 counties.

5/5/2014 Related Story: Family Calls Man Who Died In Logan County Wildfire A Hero

Many are wondering why a controlled burn was allowed during such a windy and dry day, and why there wasn't a burn ban in place.

"The law is a little too reactive. Different states have different laws. Ours can be massaged to make it safer. All we can do is talk to lawmakers and hope they listen to our opinions on it," Chief Harlow said.

Fire officials say there is no permitting process for a controlled burn in Logan County.

5/5/2014 Related Story: Questions Remain Over OK Controlled Ban, Personal Responsibility