Fire closed East Texas interstate - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Fire closed East Texas interstate

LONGVIEW,TX (KLTV)- In Harrison County, a roaring blaze stopped interstate traffic for several hours, and caused hundreds of evacuations. It started around 11 a-m Sunday on Lansing Switch road, near Interstate 20, just west of Hallsville. It started on Lansing Switch road as a spark, but within minutes it was roaring, and threatening dozens of homes.

"The winds made it really tough to contain it and stop it, we had several spots we thought we had out initially and the wind kicked it back up," says west Harrison county firefighter Blake Lyon.

5 departments were called to the blaze which had to be fought for hours.

"Hope this doesn't spread this far, it was just flames shooting out of the trees, coming across the hay meadow and coming this way," says area resident Ritchie Thompson.

The fire quickly moved into the tree lines, and homeowners were preparing for the worst. I-20 had to be shut down for hours. Hundreds of residents had to be quickly evacuated, some as they were fighting the fire themselves.

"Everybody was grabbing garden hoses and shovels trying to put it out themselves till the fire department come here, I hate to see it happening," says evacuated homeowner Craig Twombly.

Farmers tried to save their hay with the fire coming at them.

"What started out as a small fire because of power lines down turned into what we call tell so far about 60 acres," says Lyon.

After over 6 hours the fire was contained. One firefighter did receive minor injuries to his hand. According to fire crews, no homes were damaged.

The interstate has now been re-opened.

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