Grassfire Destroys 13 Homes in Colorado City

by Anayeli Ruiz
NewsWest 9

Tense moments for folks living in Colorado City as flames threatened their community on Sunday night. The fire started at the airport and quickly traveled, swallowing everything in it's path, including several homes.

Three major fires broke out on Sunday in Mitchell County.

"The one that was the largest one, grew to about eight miles long and two and half miles wide and it came into the city of Colorado City," David Abernathy, with the Texas Forest Service, said. "Some of the surrounding structures and residences surrounding Colorado City were also impacted."

The fires were so bad that at one point the Texas Forest Service said they had no more resources or manpower to send out to the fires and one of the most dangerous fires in the area was the one by the airport threatening Colorado City.

"At one point we had to start prioritizing, trying to see what fires we could send resources to and so we looked at the ones that were threatening the most infrastructures and structures, population areas," Abernathy said.

According to the Sheriff's Office, some businesses suffered smoke damage, some livestock burned and about 13 homes were damaged. Of those, homes the Franco family was one of the unfortunate families.

"I didn't know it was gonna be that bad. I thought it was just a small fire that they were gonna put out," Rudy Franco, said.

Rudy and his family lost everything, they were one of the families that came back to nothing.

"We grabbed the keys, whatever clothes you had on your back and took off, that's about all I had time for," Franco said.

The damage for acres lost is in the thousands and firefighters were still going at it on Monday. They still have many hot spots that they are trying to put out.

"We're getting a real good handle on all of them but some of them are still in very inaccessible areas. In canyons, where we can't access, we're getting a real good handle on them today (Monday), " Abernathy said.

The Forest Service expects more dry weather for Thursday and Friday so they will keep their resources here locally just in case they are needed.