Wimberley couple shares what it was like to evacuate amid wildfire

Wimberley couple shares what it was like to evacuate amid wildfire

The Kaczenski family has lived in the River Mountain Ranch area for more than a decade. WIMBERLEY, Texas — The Kaczenskis have lived in the River Mountain Ranch area for 11 years but, on Wednesday night, the Hermosa fire threatened it all. “We could have lost everything that night,” said Suzie Kaczenski.  “I got to the point where I said, ‘I want it all, but I’m not going to take any of it because we…

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Wildfire in Wimberley area 35% contained as of early Friday morning

Wildfire in Wimberley area 35% contained as of early Friday morning

The River Mountain Ranch community is currently impacted by the wildfire. WIMBERLEY, Texas — A day after three large fires sprouted up across Central Texas, a new fire sparked in the Wimberley area. Wimberley Fire Rescue first reported the fire at around 5:20 p.m. Wednesday in the River Mountain Ranch area between Bluff View and the Blanco River. The fire is located off of FM 3237 (Old Kyle Road) and River Mountain Road. Evacuations began…

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90% of wildfires in Texas are caused by humans

90% of wildfires in Texas are caused by humans

The Texas A&M Forest Service said of the human-caused fires, half of them are caused by debris burning or equipment. AUSTIN, Texas — With multiple fires burning in Central Texas this week, we wanted to learn the most common causes in order to help prevent them from starting. This year, we have seen more wildfires than in recent years, but the fires have luckily burned less acreage because they were caught earlier. “Texas A&M Forest…

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Wildfire in Wimberley area 10% contained as of early Thursday afternoon

Wildfire in Wimberley area 10% contained as of early Thursday afternoon

The River Mountain Ranch community is currently impacted by the wildfire. WIMBERLEY, Texas — A day after three large fires sprouted up across Central Texas, a new fire is now threatening homes in the Wimberley area. Wimberley Fire Rescue first reported the fire at around 5:20 p.m. Wednesday in the River Mountain Ranch area between Bluff View and the Blanco River. The fire is located off of FM 3237 (Old Kyle Road) and River Mountain…

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Wildfire in Wimberley area 5% contained as of early Thursday morning

Wildfire in Wimberley area 5% contained as of early Thursday morning

The River Mountain Ranch community is currently impacted by the wildfire. WIMBERLEY, Texas — A day after three large fires sprouted up across Central Texas, a new fire is now threatening homes in the Wimberley area. Wimberley Fire Rescue first reported the fire at around 5:20 p.m. in the River Mountain Ranch area between Bluff View and the Blanco River. The fire is located off of FM 3237 (Old Kyle Road) and River Mountain Road….

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Evacuations underway due to wildfire in Wimberley area

Evacuations underway due to wildfire in Wimberley area

WIMBERLEY, Texas — A day after three large fires sprouted up across Central Texas, a new fire is now threatening homes in the Wimberley area. Wimberley Fire Rescue first reported the fire around 5:20 p.m. in the River Mountain Ranch area between Bluff View and the Blanco River. The fire is located off of FM 3237 (Old Kyle Road) and River Mountain Road. Evacuations have started in the fire’s vicinity. Law enforcement will be contacting…

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Crews battling 3 large wildfires around Central Texas

Crews battling 3 large wildfires around Central Texas

Each of the fires is burning in a different county. HAYS COUNTY, Texas — Fire crews across Central Texas are battling three separate wildfires as a result of continued hot, dry conditions. One fire, which the Texas A&M Forest Service has named the Smoke Rider Fire, started on RM 165 in Hays County on Tuesday.  The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) reported just before 3 p.m. Tuesday that RM 165 was closed between FM 2325 and…

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PAWS Shelter of Central Texas can return animals to Dripping Springs campus after wildfire evacuation

PAWS Shelter of Central Texas can return animals to Dripping Springs campus after wildfire evacuation

All animals were moved to the shelter’s Kyle campus, Firehouse Animal Health Center in Belterra and Stay-N-Play Pet Ranch. PAWS was looking for potential fosters should longer-term placement be needed. However, the shelter said Wednesday morning that the incident commander at the fire site has given the go-ahead to move the animals back to the Dripping Springs campus, so emergency fosters are no longer needed. “We are truly grateful for everyone’s quick thinking and actions…

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PAWS Shelter of Central Texas asking for donations after wildfire evacuation

PAWS Shelter of Central Texas asking for donations after wildfire evacuation

All animals have been moved to the shelter’s Kyle campus, Firehouse Animal Health Center in Belterra and Stay-N-Play Pet Ranch, but other shelters are already at full capacity. The shelter is also seeking donations of wet and dry adult dog, puppy and kitten food, as well as cat litter. You can shop the shelter’s Amazon or Chewy wish lists. “We are so grateful for everyone’s efforts to get our animals to safety. Our thoughts go out to…

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Wildfire reported on RM 165 in Hays County; eastern Travis County wildfire flares up again

Wildfire reported on RM 165 in Hays County; eastern Travis County wildfire flares up again

According to the Texas Department of Transportation, RM 165 is closed near US 290 due to the fire. HAYS COUNTY, Texas — Multiple departments are responding to a large wildfire on RM 165 in Hays County on Tuesday afternoon. The Blanco County Emergency Management office reported that the fire is estimated at around 250 acres. The Texas A&M Forest Service has named the fire the Smoke Rider fire. Evacuations have also been issued in the…

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Wildfire reported on RM 165 in Hays County

Wildfire reported on RM 165 in Hays County

HAYS COUNTY, Texas — Multiple departments are responding to a large wildfire on RM 165 in Hays County on Tuesday afternoon. The Blanco County Emergency Management office reported that the fire is estimated at around 250 acres. Evacuations have also been issued in the area as the fire continues moving north/northwest toward US 290. Drivers are asked to avoid the area if possible. This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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Why have there been more wildfires in Central Texas this year?

Why have there been more wildfires in Central Texas this year?

A spokesperson with the Texas A&M Forest Service said Central Texas has had 988 wildfires that have resulted in more than 16,000 acres burned. AUSTIN, Texas — Fire danger conditions continue this week following multiple fires in the Central Texas area over the past several days. Those fires include a 90-acre fire in Buda, a 35-acre fire near Hornsby Bend and a 29-acre fire off of FM 969. It’s a trend the state is seeing…

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Tarrant County issues disaster declaration due to wildfire risk

Tarrant County issues disaster declaration due to wildfire risk

TARRANT COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) — Due to a serious risk of wildfires, Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley signed an emergency disaster declaration on Friday. The declaration states that due to severe drought conditions along with hot and dry weather, the area is at risk of large and quickly-spreading wildfires that could potentially endanger lives and damage property. Wildfires have ravaged large swaths of North Texas over the past month, destroying several homes and damaging many structures….

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Round Rock fund raises $435K for those impacted by March tornado

Round Rock fund raises $435K for those impacted by March tornado

The fund collected $346,000 in the first 11 days. ROUND ROCK, Texas — A local fund raised $435,000 for those impacted by a tornado in Round Rock this past March, according to a report from KVUE’s media partners at the Austin American-Statesman. The Greater Round Rock Community Foundation manages the Round Rock Cares fund, established in 2020. The fund began tornado-focused fundraising on March 25, four days after the natural disaster that caused around $33 million…

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Cooking up support for Balch Springs wildfire survivors

Cooking up support for Balch Springs wildfire survivors

(BALCH SPRINGS, Texas) — The clean-up continues in Balch Springs after a grass fire destroyed several homes in a neighborhood. The damage has inspired one person to ask what he can do and ended up bring others along to support the families who don’t have much left. The owners of Fire For the Lord BBQ, called everyone from families to first responders and anyone else in the community to come out for a free meal….

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Wildfires have been happening in Central Texas. Here's how to prepare.

Wildfires have been happening in Central Texas. Here's how to prepare.

It’s hot and dry in Central Texas right now, which means there’s a high chance a wildfire could easily spark. But by following a few tips, you can be prepared for the worst-case scenario if you have to evacuate your home, as nearly 200 homes in Williamson County did last weekend. Make an evacuation plan Walter Flocke with Texas A&M Forest Service said it’s critical to have an emergency evacuation plan for yourself and your…

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26 homes damaged after grass fire that quickly spread to Balch Springs neighborhood

26 homes damaged after grass fire that quickly spread to Balch Springs neighborhood

BALCH SPRINGS, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – The Balch Springs Fire Department has released more information about the grass fire that caught several homes on fire Monday afternoon. The grass fire was first reported to officials at 3:17 p.m. Monday. When fire officials responded, there were three acres on fire and winds were gusting between 15 and 20 MPH, causing the fire to spread quickly. Balch Springs Fire Marshal Sean Davis said they believe a lawn crew…

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Wildfire in Liberty Hill now 75% contained, officials say

Wildfire in Liberty Hill now 75% contained, officials say

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%…

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Authorities responding to wildfire on Tower Road in Liberty Hill

Authorities responding to wildfire on Tower Road in Liberty Hill

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 25%…

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Vigil held in Somervell County for wildfire victims

Vigil held in Somervell County for wildfire victims

SOMERVELL COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – Residents just southwest of DFW are praying that spiritual power will prevent devastating wildfires from doing more damage in Somerville County.  CBS 11 News had the only camera inside the evacuation center where a prayer vigil took place Wednesday night.  There were tears here tonight for those who lost everything and passionate prayers for divine intervention to stop fires that are still raging and threatening homes.  “Lord we don’t understand loss…

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Constant wildfires and extreme heat taking a toll on first responders in Texas

Constant wildfires and extreme heat taking a toll on first responders in Texas

NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) — Fighting near constant fires in these triple digit temperatures is taking a physical and mental toll on first responders in Texas. “So far this week, we have crews out in the Wichita Falls area, out at Possum Kingdom Lake, and we also had crews yesterday out in Bridgeport,” said Deputy Chief Brandon Barth with the Flower Mound Fire Department. The Flower Mound Fire Department sends strike teams out 14 days at a…

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Crews contain 90-acre wildfire in Florence

Crews contain 90-acre wildfire in Florence

FLORENCE, Texas — The extreme heat has been sparking grassfires in Central Texas. On Monday, fire crews worked to contain a 90-acre fire off County Road 220 in Florence, Texas. Fourteen emergency services agencies worked together to put the fire out. No homes or businesses were affected, and no injuries were reported. Williamson County Emergency Services said the fire departments of Florence, Coupland, Liberty Hill, Georgetown, Round Rock, Hutto, Pflugerville and Burnet; ESD 5; Travis…

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Disaster declaration issued in Kaufman County due to burning wildfire

Disaster declaration issued in Kaufman County due to burning wildfire

KAUFMAN COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – A disaster declaration has been issued in Kaufman County due to a burning wildfire. The declaration is in effect for seven days after being issued. The almost 500-acre wildfire, labeled King’s Creek Fire, is not spreading anymore but continues to burn.  The fire began burning at about 4:30 p.m. Sunday along County Road 4061. As of 8:30 a.m. Monday, the fire is an estimated 508 acres with 75% contained. As of…

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200-acre wildfire burns near Possum Kingdom Lake

200-acre wildfire burns near Possum Kingdom Lake

PALO PINTO COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) – A fire has broken out in Palo Pinto County near Possum Kingdom Lake.  On Monday, an estimated 200-acre wildfire started near Possum Kingdom Lake. According to Texas A&M Forest Service, the fire is 0% contained as of Monday afternoon. Alert: Texas A&M Forest Service is responding to a request for assistance in Palo Pinto County on the #1148Fire. The fire is an estimated 200 acres and 0% contained. #txfire pic.twitter.com/CIeH8MrG5V…

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Austin Airtanker Base opens to assist with wildfire activity across Texas

Austin Airtanker Base opens to assist with wildfire activity across Texas

The base at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport will accept aircraft coming and going from wildfires all over the state. AUSTIN, Texas — As dry conditions continue to raise the risk to wildfires across the state, the Texas A&M Forest Service on Friday announced that it is opening the Austin Airtanker Base at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport to insist with fire activity in Texas. Officials say this year’s activity is trending above normal. Since Jan. 1, the service…

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Repairing Tornado Damage Takes Time, But Research, Outreach Continue

Advancing the newest peanut varieties may take an extra year and this year’s peanut crop may not run through the new peanut sheller. But the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center and Texas A&M AgriLife Foundation Seed at Vernon continue to serve their clients after a May 4 tornado. For Rick Vierling, Ph.D., center director, it’s not so much the existing damage that keeps him busy but rather the greater damage that could occur if large pieces of…

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257-acre wildfire in Dripping Springs now contained

257-acre wildfire in Dripping Springs now contained

About 10 homes were evacuated due to the flames. DRIPPING SPRINGS, Texas — Crews have contained a 257-acre wildfire in Dripping Springs that began on Wednesday, the Hays County Office of Emergency Management said. Firefighters from North Hays Fire and Wimberley Fire were on the scene on the Storm Ranch property off Gatlin Creek Road. A helicopter made bucket drops over the area, and the Texas A&M Forest Service assisted with bulldozers and air resources. The…

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Crews fighting 75-acre wildfire in Dripping Springs

Crews fighting 75-acre wildfire in Dripping Springs

Evacuations may be needed as a precaution as the fire threatens homes in the area, the Hays County Office of Emergency Management said. Command staff was conducting emergency phone notification for about 10 houses. A helicopter was making bucket drops in over the area, and the Texas A&M Forest Service was en route with bulldozers and air resources. Residents are asked to watch for emergency vehicles in the area. No other information is available at…

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Independence Day Heightens Wildfire Risk

Independence Day Heightens Wildfire Risk

As Texans make plans to celebrate the Fourth of July with picnics, grilling, camping and fireworks, Texas A&M Forest Service asks everyone to be careful with any outdoor activity that may cause a spark. Approximately 90% of wildfires are caused by humans and their activities, and Independence Day is one of the top days for reported wildfires. With current drought conditions across most of the state, the public is encouraged to help protect Texans by preventing wildfires. …

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Activity In Tropics Emerges As Next Big Hurricane Could Send Gas Prices To “Apocalyptic” Levels [VIDEO]

Activity In Tropics Emerges As Next Big Hurricane Could Send Gas Prices To “Apocalyptic” Levels [VIDEO]

Three tropical disturbances are being closely monitored for development in the Atlantic as fears mount that above-average storms could wreak havoc on oil/gas operations in the Gulf of Mexico and send gas prices at the pump to “apocalyptic” heights.  “The lull in the tropics has come to an end as we’re now watching three different areas for development from the Gulf of Mexico to the central Atlantic,” The Weather Channel reports.  The first system is an area…

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Tropical Storm Alex, the first of the hurricane season, forms in Gulf of Mexico

Tropical Storm Alex, the first of the hurricane season, forms in Gulf of Mexico

Tropical Storm Alex, the first named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, formed Sunday morning in the Gulf of Mexico on a track to come ashore in southern Florida with heavy rains and gusty wind. National Hurricane Center forecasters said in a 5 a.m. advisory that Alex had sustained winds of 50 mph and was located about 270 miles northeast of Fort Pierce, Florida. Parts of South Florida were experiencing road flooding from heavy rain and wind…

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Arlington man dies after being rescued from flash flood

Arlington man dies after being rescued from flash flood

ARLINGTON, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) — A man is dead after first responders in Arlington pulled at least three people from an SUV stuck in high water due to flash floods on June 3, 2022. According to the Dallas County Medical Examiner’s office, the victim was identified as Saniel Antonio Singh, 22. The Medical Examiner has not yet listed an official cause of death.   Arlington police said that first responders responded to the area around Mansfield…

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Welcome to the Atlantic Hurricane Season

Welcome to the Atlantic Hurricane Season

NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The Atlantic Hurricane Season starts today and is expected to produce “above normal” activity.  The first Tropical Depression (with sustained winds at 38 mph or less) of the Atlantic season is likely to form over the next 48 hours, just off the Yucatan Peninsula. CBSDFW.COM The atmospheric low-pressure system will drift northeast over the Caribbean and produce heavy rain in southern Florida, including the Florida Keys, by Friday and Saturday. It…

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In his own words, KVUE photojournalist recalls 1997 Jarrell tornado and how it affected him

In his own words, KVUE photojournalist recalls 1997 Jarrell tornado and how it affected him

Veteran photojournalist Scott Guest captured some of the first images of the deadly 1997 tornado. JARRELL, Texas — Veteran photojournalist Scott Guest has been an award-winning videographer for KVUE News for 28 years. He captured some of the first images of the devastating tornado that struck Jarrell, Texas, on May 27, 1997.  The following is a firsthand account taken from a recent video interview with Guest, some of which has been edited for clarity. “I was…

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KVUE remembers the 1997 Jarrell tornado

KVUE remembers the 1997 Jarrell tornado

JARRELL, Texas — On May 27, 1997, a massive F-5 tornado struck the rural town of Jarrell, Texas, killing 27 people. The storm showed no mercy, claiming the lives of men, women, children and livestock. In the wake of the storm, residents were left with having to pick up the pieces, saying their final farewells to friends and neighbors all while the world was watching. Now, 25 years later, KVUE is honoring those who lost…

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Former KVUE reporters remember covering the 1997 Jarrell tornado

Former KVUE reporters remember covering the 1997 Jarrell tornado

Judy Maggio and Carolyn Mungo reflected on their time covering the devastating F-5 tornado that killed 27 people. JARRELL, Texas — So many people across Central Texas remember where they were when the F-5 tornado hit Jarrell, Texas, 25 years ago. We checked in with some former KVUE reporters who were on the ground right after the tornado struck. If you watched KVUE News during the ’80s and ’90s, you might recognize Judy Maggio. But…

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How Jarrell remembers the victims of the 1997 tornado

How Jarrell remembers the victims of the 1997 tornado

JARRELL, Texas — You don’t have to look far in the Jarrell, Texas, area to find something honoring the victims of the 1997 tornado. Down County Road 305, just a few miles from its original location closer to the interstate, is Jarrell Memorial Park. It’s a peaceful, quiet setting where you can study the 27 names, etched in stone, of the storm’s victims. The monument is surrounded by 27 trees, planted in the victims’ memory….

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'It didn't seem real' | Man remembers capturing the 1997 Jarrell tornado on camera

'It didn't seem real' | Man remembers capturing the 1997 Jarrell tornado on camera

Twenty-five years ago, a college student stopped at a gas station to buy a disposable camera. He didn’t know he would use it to capture history. JARRELL, Texas — “It was hot, sticky,” Ryan Beck said. “It was just super humid, but it was absolutely blue skies.”  Twenty-five years ago, Beck and a friend were heading back to college in Waco, Texas, after a road trip. “We were always looking for the adventures,” he said….

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In 1997, Cedar Park was hit by a tornado from the same system that produced Jarrell's deadly storm

In 1997, Cedar Park was hit by a tornado from the same system that produced Jarrell's deadly storm

CEDAR PARK, Texas — In late May 1997, Texas was hit by a major tornado outbreak when nearly two dozen twisters touched down in Central Texas. The storm system produced the F-5 tornado that directly hit the Double Creek Estates community in Jarrell, Texas, leaving 27 people dead. Further south in Cedar Park, Texas, that same system hit the city with a tornado of its own. The target was an Albertson’s grocery store where people…

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