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Thursday, July 5, 2012

Large brush fire in west Lawrence

Posted: July 5, 2012 - 12:45pm
Updated: July 6, 2012 - 3:40am

Photo by Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical
Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical was dispatched to a grass fire in the 6000 block of Bob Billings Parkway and George Williams Way at 10:20 a.m.. A media release says that due to extremely dry conditions, wind gusts and an abundance of dry vegetation, the fire began to spread rapidly to the northeast potentially affecting several homes along Palisades Street and Langston Hughes Elementary School. The incident was upgraded to a structure fire with mutual aid requests from numerous neighboring departments.

Mutual aid was received from; Eudora Township, Wakarusa Township, Lecompton Township, Willow Springs Township, and Kanwaka Township.

In addition to the Douglas County departments, mutual aid was also requested from several Johnson County departments which included; Olathe, Lenexa, Overland Park, and Shawnee Fire Departments. Johnson County Med-Act also assisted with emergency medical coverage.

Photo courtesy of Frozen Pixel Studios
Numerous homes in the 6200 block of Palisades street were evacuated until the fire could be contained. All residents were allowed back into their homes by 12:30 p.m..

No injuries were reported to Fire Department personnel and the American Red Cross provided rehydration assistance to multiple responding agencies.

Investigators say the fire was sparked after a squirrel came into contact with overhead electrical power lines, causing a spark which ignited the vegetation beneath the line.

Photo courtesy of Frozen Pixel Studios
Officials say there is not a dollar loss associated with the vegetation burned, however minor damages are being assessed of the houses that were adjacent to the burned area.

Additional information and photos from Operation 100 News reporting partners at the Lawrence Journal-World.
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