Some of the agencies, churches, nonprofits and other groups helping with disaster relief will be listed in The Oklahoman tomorrow. We’re looking for folks who are providing everything from meals to clothing to food. To read our most current list, go here.
To have your group listed, email email@example.com or call 475-3911 by 4:30 p.m. today.
- Carrie Coppernoll
Police blocked off SE 149 between Anderson and Westminster Roads because of continuing fires. Firefighters are still working to continue brush fires around Lake Stanley Draper.
- Vallery Brown
About 20 displaced residents have taken their pets to the Midwest City Animal Welfare shelter for temporary keeping, said Jay Eskey, a code officer helping Animal Welfare officials. About 10 lost animals have been brought to the shelter after the fires last night. To report a missing pet, call the Animal Welfare division at 427-6640 or stop by the shelter, 7221 NE 36.
Animal workers helped reunite animals to their owners Thursday night, said Catherine English, superintendent of Oklahoma City Animal Welfare. About a dozen loose animals were captured and returned to their owners.
- Staff Writer Carrie Coppernoll
Press release from the Oklahoma County Assessor’s office:
The field appraisers from the Oklahoma County Assessor’s Office have been evaluating and assessing the damage from the wildfires of April 9 in the eastern part of Oklahoma County. The damage is estimated to be in parts of a 16 square mile area.
After an on-site visit to most of the affected area this morning, the extent of the damage is so wide-spread and random we have determined it may be early next week before we can complete the entire assessment of damage.
We would appreciate any help from the public to evaluate the damage so we can complete our task. Since some of the area is inaccessible because of the rural nature of the landscape, if your home has been damaged or destroyed, please contact the assessor’s office by phone at (405) 713-1241 or email the assessor’s office at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can double check the information.
If your home or property is hidden by trees and access to the property is blocked by a locked gate we would like to arrange a time to get access to the property and assess the damage.
The fires are being blamed for 52 injuries throughout the state, said Patrice Greenawalt, trauma director for the Department of Health. Hospitals taking care of patients reported the injuries between 6 p.m. Thursday and 1:15 p.m. today. Greenawalt said the injuries ranged from burns to injuries sustained while evacuating.
In the Oklahoma City area, 21 people had been injured and five people were injured in the surrounding metro area, she said.
Across the state, 10 people were injured in fires in northwestern Oklahoma and 13 people were injured in southwestern Oklahoma. No injuries related to Thursday evenings tornadoes in eastern Oklahoma have been reported, Greenawalt said. The numbers would be updated throughout the day, she said.
- Julie Bisbee
The National Weather Service has issued a hazardous weather outlook for many Oklahoma counties: Adair, Cherokee, Choctaw, Craig, Creek, Delaware, Haskell, Latimer, Le Flore, Mayes, Mcintosh, Muskogee, Nowata, Okfuskee, Okmulgee, Osage, Ottawa, Pawnee, Pittsburg, Pushmataha, Rogers, Sequoyah, Tuls, Wagoner and Washington.
Winds are expect to continue at 10 to 20 mph with gusts up to 30 mph today. But the wind will die down tonight, decreasing fire danger.
A storm is expected to move through the state late Saturday. There’s a slight chance for severe weather.
- Carrie Coppernoll
Oklahoma City Fire Lt. Steven Parks said firefighters in the area are operating roving commands, which means they’re trying to keep the fire contained. Eight brush pumpers and three engines are working on hot spots in the area.
“They have good control on the outside edges of the fire,” he said. “But they’re mopping up and making sure it doesn’t spread.”
Firefighters still aren’t sure exactly how many homes have been destroyed by the grass fires.
- Vallery Brown
Lt. Col. Max Moss said the Oklahoma National Guard received a request from the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management this morning to assist in firefighting efforts in Stephens County near Velma.
Because reduced winds allowed for the assistance, Moss said the Guard is sending two Blackhawk helicopters with 660-gallon water buckets to help control wildfires there.
The National Guard said they couldn’t assist the ground effort Thursday because of winds that gusted to more than 60 mph in some areas .
- Johnny Johnson
A fire near Lake Stanley Draper flared up again about 1 p.m., threatening the home of Sung Wood. Wood just built her home south of SE 134 a year ago. Fire trucks ran out of water and had to leave for more, but they were able to return quickly enough to extinguish the flames.
“I just wonder how long it will keep burning,” she said, clutching her stomach.
Wood was evacuated yesterday and slept in a Walmart parking lot.
- Vallery Brown