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Firefighters battle large grass fire near Wasta

Lightning sparked multiple smaller grass fires
Published: Aug. 24, 2020 at 10:01 AM CDT
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WASTA, S.D. (KOTA) - Fire crews battled from dusk to dawn to control a wildfire in the Great Plains.

Wasta Volunteer Fire Department responded to the “97″ fire in the 18000 block of Base Line Rd. within unincorporated Pennington County at 5:17 p.m. Sunday.

According to Great Plains Fire Information, crews discovered 5-foot flames spreading across cured grass and brush and immediately requested additional resources to fight the fire.

Pennington County Fire Administrator Jerome Harvey says the fire burned approximately 2,500 acres and crews have stopped further burning as of 8:44 a.m. Monday. A more accurate estimate of the total acreage burned will be provided when available.

Harvey adds firefighters had to attack at least a dozen lightning-induced fires that originated from an evening storm alongside the primary fire. A cause has yet to be determined for the main wildfire.

Rugged terrain, pitch-black darkness and moderate drought conditions hindered efforts to control the fire.

The wildfire damaged an undetermined number of ranching assets in the area.

No injuries to firefighters, civilians or domestic animals have been reported.

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