Several Homes, Acres Burned in Johnson County
iPix from Wyatt Blackard
A faulty window air conditioning unit in a mobile home sparked several grass fires that burned several structures and between 80-100 acres of land near Clarksville Friday afternoon, according to Johnson County Sheriff Jimmy Dorney.
Three houses and two barns were burned, while two other structures were damaged, before the fire was contained around 6 p.m. Sheriff Dorney says firefighters managed to save 10 other homes and several buildings in the area from the fire.
It all started with a mobile home on fire on County Road 3771 A which was reported around 1 p.m., according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.
The fire quickly spread east to an open field with several homes nearby. Homes along Hudson Springs Rd near Highway 103 two miles north of Clarksville were evacuated.
Dorney says the fire jumped County Road 3300 and continued north along the hillside.
Several rural fire departments, along with firefighters from Clarksville, Knoxville, and Lamar helped fight the flames. Sherry Russell with the forestry commission says two dozer crews were brought in. A helicopter with a water bucket has also been sent in to help, according to Major Chris Heathscott with the Arkansas National Guard.
While crews were battling that fire, Dorney says two other fires broke out. One was at an outbuilding on Mount Vernon Loop. The second was an outbuilding in the Spadra Community, according to the sheriff. Both were quickly brought under control with minimal damage.