A wildfire April 22nd burned 11,000 acres near Thedford, Nebraska threatening at one point to spread to buildings in the community.
Thomas County Sheriff Gary Eng said no structures were damaged, no wildlife were killed and the only injuries were two firefighters from Valentine who suffered minor burns. Eighteen sections of land were blackened by the blaze. Sheriff Eng says the fire was started when an all-terrain vehicle being used by a rancher checking his livestock ignited dry grass in a field.
Eng said with the fire being whipped along by 30-to-40 mph winds, losses could have been much worse. At its peak, the fire was nine miles long and a mile wide…coming to within about two miles of federal land managed by the Nebraska National Forests and Grasslands.
More than 200 firefighters from over 20 departments spent about seven hours battling the blaze, with help from a plane flown by NATA member Garry Wells, Wells Air Service in Scotia, dropping water and foam. Source: NATA newsletter