April 19, 2011
Massive wildfires raging across Texas in the last week have charred nearly a half-million acres.
According to the Texas Forest Service, massive wildfires raging across Texas in the last week have charred nearly a half-million acres – and that figure is likely to grow as conditions are expected to worsen if dry, windy conditions persist.
Many students, faculty and staff will travel to enjoy Easter weekend with friends and family. If you are among those traveling, please be prepared for potential dangers and travel delays.
Please review additional information from the Texas Division of Emergency Management.
Texans have lost their lives during severe wildfire seasons because wildfire overtook them in their vehicles.
High winds may cause wildfires to spread rapidly and jump across natural barriers such as roads and even waterways. Strong winds can force smoke to stay low to the ground, obscuring roadways and traffic signs. Texas wildfires have been propelled by wind gusts as high as 60 mph.
Pay attention to TV and radio broadcasts BEFORE you travel. Be aware of fire and weather conditions along your route. Avoid traveling into areas where wildfire activity has been reported. Delaying your trip could save your life.
As you travel, monitor local radio and TV news broadcasts – and watch for highway signs providing information on fire danger.
Watch for traffic control personnel, fire fighters and law enforcement officers. Slow down and be prepared to stop if they signal you to do so.
If you encounter dense smoke – slow down as you prepare to stop and turn around. Activate your emergency flashers to warn vehicles behind you that you have decreased your speed or stopped. Do not turn around until you have checked for oncoming traffic and can turn safely.
For more information, click here.