Wildfire burns 5000 acres, creates smoky haze over Galveston, Chambers counties


by Vicente Arenas / KHOU 11 News


Posted on October 25, 2013 at 5:32 PM

Updated Friday, Oct 25 at 6:53 PM


HOUSTON—The smoke you’ve seen around the Houston area may hang around until Saturday.

It’s coming from an out-of-control fire on the McFaddin Wildlife Refuge near High Island, which is north of Boliver Peninsula.

As many as 5,000 acres were on fire late Friday.

At one point, the columns of smoke were so thick they formed a dome over the community of High Island.

People who live in the area said they were having problems breathing.

Joni Harding of Crystal Beach said, she was even having trouble talking. 

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is not sure how the fire started.

It was not a controlled burn.

Crews are using three engines and a helicopter to set smaller fires in an attempt to stop the blaze from spreading.

The McFaddin Wildlife Refuge spreads over 5000 acres.

Its marshland is home to a number of birds and other wildlife.

That burning marsh is what’s creating the smoke.

People who live in Boliver Peninsula told KHOU 11 News, the smoke was so thick at one point drivers couldn’t see roads.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is hoping to get the fire under control by Saturday.