Southern Plains and Florida Wildfires, US (March 2017)

At least 150 homes in the Texas Panhandle were threatened by wildfires Tuesday

At least 150 homes in the Texas Panhandle were threatened by wildfires Tuesday. Several wildfires threatened the Texas Panhandle

Background: Wildfires destroy hundreds of thousands of acres in the Texas Panhandle Tuesday, March 7, 2017. Kuhns said there also have been significant cattle losses as entire ranches were engulfed. The three were identified Tuesday morning as Emmert Sloan, Cody Crockett and Sydney Wallace.

The fires in the Texas Panhandle claimed at least five lives, including three ranchers who were trying to save their cattle in the Texas Panhandle. "That wind was blowing 60 [miles an hour] or more". That surpasses the 312,427 acres that burned in Barber and Comanche Counties in 2016. The largest - which burned about 500 square miles in the northeast Panhandle near the Oklahoma border - was 75 percent contained Thursday. Heading out soon to assist with the wildfires.

"On Tuesday morning, smoldering fields and hay piles were sending throat-clogging smoke into the air", reported the Post's Jesse Paul.

One fire, located in Potter County near the city of Amarillo, Texas, had burned an estimated almost 30,000 acres, but was 75% contained.

Just an indication of the type of battle the crew - and many others - would be waging throughout the day; dealing with hotspots and hoping a larger fire doesn't spark again. In Kansas, fires have destroyed about 30 buildings and burned about 400,000 acres (160,000 hectares) according to state officials. "The fires still will be moving", Bunting said.

"The state forestry predicts it may take a week or more to contain the fires".

The amount of vegetation fueling the fires, the drought, and high winds means "everything has come together to overlap to create a pretty volatile situation", Liz Leitman, a Storm Prediction Center meteorologist, told the AP on Wednesday. In a March 8 update, OFS reported that the largest wildfire in Oklahoma and Kansas has burned over 715,000 acres and is 0% contained. The crew will stay at the fire sites after the fires are under control to prevent flare-ups, Barnes said. Firefighters will remain on scene today as windy weather conditions are expected to be similar to yesterday, causing fire flare ups and limited visibility due to blowing smoke and dust.

One of the best resources being used right now are helicopters, which are actively being used in the firefight.

The fire department in nearby Grandview, Mo. "This complex consists of three separate fires".

U.S. Sens. Jim Inhofe and James Lankford of Oklahoma planned to visit the northwest part of the state Friday to discuss the wildfires. The patrol said he succumbed to smoke when he got out of his vehicle.

Kansas wildfires have burned about 625 square miles of land. The Kansas Livestock Association is working with private donors to provide hay for cattle in counties that suffered extensive loss of grazing lands and baled hay.

Evacuation orders were issued for the communities of Laverne, Buffalo and Fort Supply in Woodward and Payne Counties.

Authorities say a wildfire also killed an Oklahoma truck driver in Kansas.

Further details, including her identity, have not yet been released.

In northeastern Colorado near the Nebraska border, firefighters lost ground to a blaze in rural Logan and Phillips counties.

The fires have torched hundreds of square miles and killed at least six people.

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