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Residents within a two-mile radius were asked to evacuate Saturday afternoon and were allowed to return in the evening.
WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas — The Williamson County Office of Emergency Management said Saturday evening that all evacuees asked to leave their homes due to the wildfire are now allowed to return.
Williamson County authorities first reported a 100-acre fire in Liberty Hill early Saturday afternoon. That fire has since burned through 500 acres and was 75% contained as of 9:03 p.m. Sunday. The Texas A&M Forest Service tweeted that the forward progression of the fire had been stopped.
Crews were mopping up and improving the containment line as of Saturday afternoon. The forest service said air resources have assisted in cooling the perimeter and are reinforcing the line with retardant.
Williamson County Judge Bill Gravell said Sunday that 12 DC-10 loads of retardant and 50 loads of water had been dumped in the area.
“I know that it’s been a great inconvenience for Lake Georgetown to be closed, but this is about protecting lives and property, and we appreciate everyone’s patience while crews work diligently to put out this fire. Crews will work overnight, as well as tomorrow as needed,” he said.
The fire started on Tower Road near Lake Georgetown. That’s northeast of State Highway 29 and Highway 183. The Georgetown Fire Department later confirmed that the fire had spread across the lake. The Texas A&M Forest Service is calling it the San Gabriel Fire.
Residents within a two-mile radius of the fire were evacuated. Santa Rita Middle School was set up as a shelter for those being evacuated. The City of Liberty Hill said more than 1,600 residents were notified of the fire and 200 homes were evacuated.
Lake Georgetown and the trails around the lake are closed for recreational use until further notice. Residents are asked to avoid the area.
The Georgetown Fire Department, the Liberty Hill Fire Department and the Texas A&M Forest Service are responding along with Travis County STAR Flight and other surrounding departments. A total of 22 agencies responded with nine aircraft and at least two helicopters.
No injuries or structure damage were reported.
Gravel said in a brief update Saturday that he will look into enhancing the burn ban already in place and adding more restrictions.
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.
PHOTOS: Area of San Gabriel fire on July 24
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