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Firefighters Gaining Upperhand on Central Texas Wildfires

Authorities say they are up to 70 percent containment on a massive Central Texas wildfire that has consumed more than 34,000 acres and over 1,500 homes. But they also are worried that stiff winds with gusts up to 25 miles per hour this afternoon and later in the week could cause flare-ups.

Bastrop County emergency management director Mike Fisher says weather conditions are “very serious.” Fires outside Bastrop, about 25 miles from Austin, have been burning for 10 days and have destroyed more homes than any in Texas history.

Schools were reopened yesterday and the Bastrop County sheriff stated that contractors will get the green light to go into areas previously closed off so they begin clearing out debris and start repairs.

What caused the largest of the blazes is still unclear, but Fisher said officials don’t believe arson was involved. The Insurance Council of Texas said Monday losses from the past week of wildfires could reach $250 million.

Information from the Associated Press used in this report

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