Two persons died on Tuesday in the massive wildfire that has covered Bastrop Texas since Monday.
They were not public safety responders said officials without any further details. The death toll from Labor Day weekend wildfires across Texas raises to four with these two deaths in the Bastrop County Complex. On Monday a 20-year-old mother and her 18-month-old daughter, caught by flames in a mobile home, died in Gregg County (northeast Texas).
This is the most withering wildfire in Texas in over ten years. The Bastrop County Complex fire destroyed almost 600 homes and led to evacuation of 5,000 in Bastrop County alone.
More than ten other fires sweeped on Tuesday, burning six homes in Caldwell County (near Bastrop County), twelve homes in Grimes County (40 miles northwest of Houston). In Cass County a 7,000-acre fire burned in heavy timberland and in one neighborhood in Bastrop flames attacked houses built among oaks, pines and cedar trees.
The wildfire in Leander destroyed over ten homes and caused the evacuations of 500 residents and $1.4 million in damage. The fire is investigating as arson, Police were searching for three teens connected to that.
Officials of Federal Emergency Management Agency came to Bastrop Texas and began to assess the needs of the victims and damages.
“It is certainly a remarkable fire in terms of evacuations and the number of homes that have burned,” said Ken Frederick, of National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho.
Texas Task Force 1, a wide-area search team sent to New York after the September 11, 2001, attacks and to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, was deployed by Governor on Tuesday evening.
“Pretty powerful visuals of individuals who lost everything. The magnitude of these losses are pretty stunning.” Said Rick Perry, Texas Governor.
The available bulldozers and other heavy equipment were kept at the Army’s Fort Hood, around 75 miles from Bastrop, Perry complained. He also asked for federal assistance and in order to help Texas Obama administration approved seven federal grants, said Jay Carney, White House spokesman.
Over 1,000 firefighters (including crews from California and Oregon), five heavy tanker planes, and three aircrafts have struggled to contain the monstrous blaze.
On Tuesday, the winds (moved by Tropical Storm Lee) became weaker and that helped to wildfire containment. There are still flames across Bastrop Texas, and the fire is far from being extinguished.