State Emergency Services Activated in Fire Fight
BISMARCK, N.D. – Gov. Jack Dalrymple today said state emergency response personnel, deployed Wednesday to help contain a major grass fire in southwest North Dakota and protect area residents, remain on location and continue to assist local officials.
“It’s critical that local firefighters and other emergency responders get all the support they need to make sure this devastating fire remains contained and no longer poses a threat to life or property,” Gov. Jack Dalrymple said. “The state will continue to provide the resources needed to assist local officials.”
Fire departments from throughout the region, supported by the North Dakota Forest Service and other state emergency personnel, have contained the grass fire which started late Wednesday east of Reeder and advanced along Highway 12 to about five miles west of Hettinger. Emergency service officials report that the fire, fueled by dry vegetation and strong winds, destroyed four homes in the small community of Bucyrus. Emergency responders evacuated Bucyrus and rural homes in the path of the fire.
The North Dakota Department of Emergency Services activated the state emergency operations center Wednesday and state officials worked throughout the night to help local officials coordinate the emergency response. The North Dakota Forest Service deployed three fire engines and they remain on scene. A fourth engine is on standby in Bismarck. The state Department of Health staged mobile medical services in Hettinger until the fire was contained early this morning. The North Dakota National Guard has also remained on standby.
Lt. Gov. Drew Wrigley and North Dakota Major Gen. David Sprynczynatyk will tour the area of the fire today and coordinate continued emergency services with local officials. The fire has been contained thanks to the assistance of fire departments from many area communities including Reeder, Scranton, Hettinger, New England, Regent, Lemmon, S.D., Lodgepole, S.D., Bison, S.D., Grand River, S.D., Harding County, S.D., and Perkins County, S.D.