UNDATED – (DRG News) Fires have kept emergency responders busy across many parched areas of central and western South Dakota. A fire was reported northwest of Philip yesterday and was fought by firefighters from a number of different departments. More information on that blaze is expected later today.
Murdo Firefighters were called out to a bale fire and a pasture fire Thursday. The pasture fire was five miles south of Okaton at Sandy Flat and burned 135 acres of grass before it was extinguished last evening. Fire Chief Rich Sylva says the pasture fire was started by lightning. Sylva says the Draper Fire Department sent units to the pasture fire to assist Murdo crews.
Besides helping Murdo with firefighting, Draper fire responders spent Thursday evening helping at the scene of weather related accidents last night. High winds caused at least three different vehicles to be overturned on Interstate 90. There was a semi tipped over near Draper-and the driver of the rig was reportedly pinned in the truck for a time. A few miles further east-a semi with an empty cattle pot was damaged when the winds pushed it over. Draper firefighters helped clear up diesel fuel from the scene of that accident. An SUV pulling a camper near there was also hit by the high winds, which tipped the camper over.
A fire that has been dubbed the Cactus Fire, started at the junction of Interstate 90 and Exit 127-near Cactus Flat. At last update this morning-that fire was more than 1,000 acres in size and about 75% contained. At one point yesterday, officials said it threatened two residences and ten outbuildings. Local, state, federal and volunteer firefighters responded to the scene of the Cactus Fire-and the cause is under investigation.
Grassland Fire Danger Indexes are in the very high to extreme category in several parts of western South Dakota today. In Central areas, the fire danger is listed as moderate by the National Weather Service.
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