Fire Burns 75-100 Acres in Henderson County

Published 03/15 2014 10:07PM

Updated 03/15 2014 10:23PM

The view from Roberts Road in Henderson County Saturday afternoon is a massive cloud of smoke and 8-10 foot flames. A closer look shows much of the field is already charred. A ditch is keeping the fire from spreading to a nearby field, but it's only a matter of time before the flames reach over. A neighboring farmer drives a bulldozer trying to build a barrier between the fire and an oil rig. Northwest winds move the fire toward Niagara where two fisherman see the smoke, drop what they are doing, and pitch in.

"Next thing we knew it was right up at our back door. We just grabbed rakes and we took off," said Kevin Baxter. "We cut it off at the creek down here and it's burning up towards Niagara school right now."

Near Highway 416 West the fire is burning much stronger. Near Roberts Road corn fields are fueling the fire, but here "set aside" farmland might as well be gasoline. "When it gets in there the flames get 6, 8, 10 feet high. We were worried about the houses that's up here. We brought our pumpers over here to stage in this area in case something like that happened and we couldn't get it stopped." Chief Glenn Powell of the Niagara Fire Department says if they didn't stop the fire in this field, it could spread all the way Niagara.

Several crews attacked the fire from above, from the ground, with water, with rakes, and with a Gator. About 100 acres of charred farmland later, crews were able to stomp out the last of the flames.

A burn ban is in place in Henderson County from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. to try to prevent something like this from happening again. Citations might be coming to the person responsible for starting the fire.

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