2 Texas firefighters injured as fire weather danger increases across Plains

Texas, Oklahoma and the Pacific Northwest face hazardous fire weather conditions this week and ongoing drought conditions as firefighters work to douse some wildfires already burning.

SAN JACINTO COUNTY, Texas -- Two firefighters received burn injuries on Wednesday while battling a wildfire north of Houston, according to Texas A&M Forest Service.

The injuries come as Texas faces hazardous fire weather conditions this week amid ongoing drought conditions. 

Crews with the Texas A&M Forest Service responded to the Snowhill Fire Wednesday evening near Sam Houston National Forest when it was 50 acres and 10% contained.

According to Texas A&M Forest Service, when the Snowhill Fire intensified around 5 p.m. in an area where personnel were constructing containment lines, two firefighters received first and second-degree burns from radiant heat and were taken to the hospital for treatment.


Fire activity later increased, and the blaze eventually grew to 200 acres before it was 90% contained. Crews are still monitoring the fire. 

Texas A&M Forest Service firefighters are responding to about 10 active fires throughout the Lone Star State. More than a dozen others are fully contained. 

Fire weather risks exist across Texas, Oklahoma

Persistent fire weather is making firefights more difficult for crews this week across several regions in the U.S. 

On Thursday, Fire Weather Warnings are in place for Texas and Oklahoma, as well the Pacific Northwest and Great Lakes regions. 

Fire weather risks will remain elevated through Friday morning for Austin. Meanwhile, a critical risk remains for areas including Dallas and Wichita Falls


Fire Weather Warnings are also in effect for Boise and Twin Falls, Idaho, northwest California and Eastern Oregon, including Bend and Lakeview

Recent monsoon rains have been beneficial in California for firefighters battling the York Fire in the Mojave National Preserve.

Winds, low relative humidity and lack of rain are the fuels needed to help a wildfire rapidly grow. The wind forecast in the Northwest shows winds up to 20 mph throughout Thursday. 

Drought persists in the West

Much of Texas remains under some level of drought. Central Texas faces extreme to exceptional drought, the worst on the U.S. Drought Monitor scale. 

San Jacinto County, where the firefighters were injured on Wednesday, is under abnormally dry drought conditions. 

The Pacific Northwest is also facing abnormally dry to severe drought conditions.