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COMING TONIGHT: East Texas fire officials prepare for wildfire possibilities


POSTED: Monday, April 18, 2011 - 5:48pm

UPDATED: Monday, April 18, 2011 - 9:33pm

The Texas Forest Service says over 700,000 acres have burned across our state in the last week - and it's not getting any better.

KETK's Chief Meteorologist Scott Chesner tells us by some measures, this is the worst fire season in five years.

Jet streams have been too far north for a few months now - so we've been getting hit with winds but no rainfall.

The fires have now moved into the eastern part of Texas - burning more than 3,000 acres in Tyler County and Hardin County.

Yesterday, Jonathan McClish and Mike Garrett, 2 firefighters from the Noonday Volunteer Fire Department saw the call of duty and left with a brush truck to help fight the fires near Possum Kingdom.

Assistant Fire Chief McClish gave us an update by phone earlier today.

With one volunteer firefighter from Eastland already dead, McClish is asking for prayers.

"Well it crosses our minds, you know, every time we step foot on the truck or we're on any calls, you know - we might not come home.  We're doing our best. we're teamed up with some of the...some very good firefighters, some very good departments.  We're all watching each others back out here," McClish said.

McClish just spoke with us by phone about an hour ago to tell us the fire where they are actually crossed the road - and he is trying send us video of that.

Join us tonight at 10, you'll hear from Smith County Fire Marshal Jim Seaton about how all of this effects us here in East Texas.

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