Structural damage minimal
A wildfire raged across wood and pasture land in Doyline Monday afternoon. The fire spread through a wide area just north of Lake Bistineau State Park, near Dement Road, driven by strong winds from the northeast.
Gary Weese, who owns much of the affected land, received a call around 2 p.m. from his granddaughter, who told him his property was on fire and firefighters were already there.
“I would venture to say whatever started it was on my neighbor’s property, because it came down from that way,” Weese said, pointing to the northeast. “There wasn’t anybody over here who was out that I know of.”
Firefighters from the Doyline, Sibley, and Haughton departments responded to the blaze. Around 2 p.m. officials on the scene were estimating the area of effect to be around 30-40 acres. Two hours later, the fire was still active and spreading.
Leah Hackett, firefighter at Webster Parish district 3, emerged from the woods covered in ash. After taking a break to drink some water, she summed up the situation.
“We got out here and at first all we saw was smoke, really,” she said. “But the wind has picked up and the fire has traveled pretty far. It’s picking up real quick, kicking all the way back up past the tree line. Most of us can’t even get back there.”
Multiple individuals on scene said there had been no structural damage at the time. There was concern that the fire could reach Weese’s house, but it was contained in that direction in time.
“Other than a couple deer stands, not yet,” Hackett said. “Just trees and a lot of grass.”
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