Jeff Davis County Fire Evacuees Sleeping in Temporary Shelter at Local School

By Jen Kastner
NewsWest 9

FORT DAVIS- Two fires are spreading throughout Jeff Davis County. Firefighters are working nonstop to contain the flames.

Marilyn Olson spent Saturday night on a cot inside a temporary shelter inside the elementary school in Fort Davis. She'll be sleeping there until authorities let her go back home. Her house is inside the Davis Mountains Resort. Everyone living there has been urged to evacuate for the time being.

By the time Olson hit the road to town, she thought she might have left too late. "There was nobody on the road and then I thought, 'Oh no. I waited too long,'" she says.

Department of Public Safety troopers are stationed at the entrance to Davis Mountains Resort. Residents who evacuate will not be allowed to return to their homes until the area is determined to be safe.

There are 400 homes in the resort but only 150 homes have full time residents.

The Spring Mountain fire spans 9,580 acres. The Livermore Ranch fire, threatening the Davis Mountains Resort, spans 10,246 acres.

Patrick Allen with the Texas Forest Service tells us, "Both fires were started by dry lightning on Tuesday."

Evacuations began on Saturday and are still in effect.

"The plan of attack is to engage multiple resources including the multiple volunteer fire departments around the state and the Forest Service. We'll also utilize out-of-state resources to combat the fires via air resources, engines and hand crews," Allen said.

Those helping in the relief efforts say the community still has unhealed wounds from last year's devastating fires.

"We lost 25 houses here in Fort Davis so it's a serious situation," Shelter Organizer, Oscar Medley, said.

Roughly 100 firefighters are battling the blaze. There's still no telling when the flames will be completely extinguished.