EASTLAND, Texas (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — Officials say firefighting crews are making progress containing a massive Texas wildfire that is blamed for the death of a deputy last week.
The Eastland Complex has burned about 85 square miles since a series of fires broke out in an area 120 miles west of Dallas. The fires were about 60% contained as of Monday night, up from 30% containment a day before, according to Texas A&M Forest Service.
The fire has burned 147 structures so far and led to the death of Deputy Sgt. Barbara Fenley, who died while going door-to-door telling residents to evacuate, officials said.
“The extreme conditions present across the state last week, greatly impacted several communities and the Texans that live there,” said Wes Moorehead, Texas A&M Forest Service Fire Chief. “These communities endured significant loss and we grieve with you.”
In Ranger, Texas, a man was arrested over the weekend on felony arson charges in connection with a fire that destroyed several structures, including a 103-year-old church, police said. Robert James, 26, is facing five counts of state felony arson.
Overall, crews have responded to 178 wildfires that have burned nearly 170 square miles statewide since last Thursday, officials said.
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