UPDATE – The Smith County Fire Marshal’s Office said the fire on Tuesday was caused after someone violated a burn ban and a controlled burn got out of hand.

“Smith County is doing a good job of not burning. We do have a few here and there that are burning anyway and that’s the case here today,” Chad Hogue, Smith County Chief Deputy Fire Marshal said.

Hogue said a property owner off County Road 35, also known as Lavender Road, was burning four brush piles Tuesday morning.

According to a press release, firefighters asked the landowner to stay with them until the fire was completely out. Then, shortly after 2 p.m. that same day, the Lindale Fire Department was dispatched tot he same property because the fires had gotten out of control.

Hogue said the fire spread behind neighboring residents’ properties, across a pasture and burned about a quarter mile down County Road 492 (Ann Campbell Road) near the Swan community. The fire burned 20 round bales of hay, threatened houses and damaged two vehicles. Horses also had to be relocated, Hogue said.

“It started over the hill, and we went to go check with the neighbors, the house that’s nearest to the fire. We just wanted to check with them if they knew what’s going on because the fire just came out of nowhere,” said Jesus Esparza, a Smith County resident.

The fire was contained by 7:30 p.m. but was still smoldering Wednesday. They will check on it periodically to ensure it doesn’t reignite, Hogue added.

“In this situation, I did issue a citation which is a Class C misdemeanor for burning during a burn ban,” said Hogue.

The Class C Misdemeanor carries a fine up to $500.

A neighbor said that he saw horses in a pasture in front of his house running away from the flames. All animals that were on the pasture have been found and accounted for.

The following first responders were at the scene: Lindale Fire, Red Springs Fire, Dixie Fire, EMS, UT Health and the Smith County Sheriff’s Office. Officials said they are investigating the fire.


SMITH COUNTY, Texas (KETK) – First responders are fighting a fire on Lavender Road near County Road 492 in Smith County on Tuesday.

The following fire departments are responding: Lindale, Red Springs and Flint-Gresham.

Firefighters are battling flames. There are also several hay bales on fire, and residents in the neighborhood are working to extinguish them.

Residents are also watering their lawns to be cautious.

According to the Texas A&M Forest Service, areas near Athens, Tyler, Longview, Palestine and Huntsville could be susceptible to large wildfires through the weekend.