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Texans face extreme wildfire danger

TxDPS Announcement

(Editor's note: With wildfires still burning out of control in the West Texas and Panhandle regions, personnel with the Texas Department of Public Safety issued the following warning on Sunday, April 10.)

Wind driven wildfire can move as fast as 60 miles per hour.

When you see thick smoke across a highway, do not drive into it.

Slow down and prepare to stop and activate your emergency flashers to warn vehicles following you. After checking for oncoming traffic, turn around.

Make sure you can turn around safely.

Remember, when there is dense smoke on the road, do not drive into it.

Always stay alert to wildfire danger when traveling.

Texans face extreme wildfire danger.

Check fire and weather conditions before hitting the road and monitor radio broadcasts while traveling.

In areas where there may be wildfire, watch for highway signs, traffic control personnel and fire fighters.

Slow down and prepare to stop when they signal you to do so. Because of the speed at which wildfires can move, do not drive into dense smoke on the road.

When you are told to evacuate, do so immediately. As you evacuate, be alert to the changes in the speed and direction of fire and smoke.

If there is a wildfire in your area - and you have time to prepare
- shut gas off at the meter and turn off propane tanks.

Wet down your roof and shrubbery within 15 feet of your residence.

Choose a route that leads away from the fire.

Park your vehicle facing in the direction of escape.

Since, wildfires can travel at great speed, when told to evacuate, do so immediately.

Be cautious about outdoor activities that might cause sparks or fires.

Sparks can easily escape from burning trash. Avoid using welding or grinding equipment near dry weeds and grass. Avoid parking vehicles in tall, dry grass and weeds. Weeds and grass could be ignited by hot catalytic converters. Crush cigarettes in an ashtray and make sure they are really out.

For updates on current wildfire situation, contact


For more information on fire danger and advisories, see the Texas Forest Service website,