75 firefighters respond to Lake Waconda brush fire
Nebraska Emergency Management photo
UNION, Neb. -- Almost 700 acres had burned during the fire at Waconda Lake.
Officials said that Gov. Pillen and Maj. Gen. Daryl Bohac toured the Waconda-Beaver Lake Complex Fire on Monday to survey the fires that burned about 697 acres in Cass County Saturday and Sunday.
There were about 40 firefights still doing mop up operations on the fires Monday.
The Nebraska Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) said that Pillen thanked volunteer firefighters for their hard work responding to the fire.
Officials said that Pillen reported a 90% containment on the Beaver Lake Fire and 85% containment on the Waconda Lake Fire.
The rain from Sunday night through Monday morning reportedly helped stop the spread of the fire by raising humidity and reducing wind speed.
It was reported that no structures burned and there were no injuries reported from the fire.
More than 75 firefighters from over 30 departments worked to put out the fire which started in Iowa over the weekend.
NEMA said state resources will demobilize Monday evening including the Incident Management Assistance Team, the Wildland Incident Assessment Response Team and both the Nebraska National Guard UH 60 crew and hand crew.
Additionally, NEMA said local emergency managers in the southeast region of the state will also demobilize.
Officials said that local crews will continue to monitor and respond to issues.
NEMA said Cass County Emergency Management and the incident commanders for the fire expressed appreciation for the many volunteer fire departments that responded to the fires including: Ashland; Avoca; Bennett; Boone; Buffalo County Strike; Dunbar; Elmwood; Fairbury; Gering 1; Gibbon 41; Gretna; Hall-Howard; Ithica; Louisville; Little Sioux, Iowa; Malcolm; Manely; Mead; Mondamin, Iowa; Murdock; Murry; Nebraska National Guard Hand Crew; Nebraska City; Nehawka; Offutt; Peru; Plattsmouth; Raymond; Sutton; Southwest Fire District from Lancaster County; Rural Talamage; Tecumseh; Unadilla; Waverly and Weeping Water.
American Red Cross and the Salvation Army also helped in the response.
NEMA said that community members donated plenty of supplies including water and food to the first responders.
Officials noted that no further donations of water or food are needed. Those wanting to make further donations can make financial ones to the local volunteer fire departments.
NEHAWKA - Nebraska Emergency Management reports that more than 75 firefighters from 26 departments responded to a brush fire near Lake Waconda Saturday and Easter Sunday.
Over 650 acres burned after the fire jumped over the Missouri River into Nebraska around 6 p.m. Saturday.
Gov. Jim Pillen approved a disaster to allow funds from the governor’s emergency fund to be used to assist in the response.
The Nebraska National Guard sent a hand crew to work the ground and a UH60 helicopter to drop water on the fire Sunday afternoon.
The Nebraska State Patrol provided a drone team to provide aerial footage of the fire.
Shane Adams of the Nehawka Volunteer Fire Department said local firefighters were relieved overnight.
No structures have been affected.
The fire is estimated to be 0% contained by Monday morning.
PLATTSMOUTH - The Plattsmouth Fire Department reported a structure fire on Friday evening.
Firefighters were dispatched for a grass fire in the back yard, but arrived to find the house on fire.
Crews from Plattsmouth and Murray extinguished the fire and rescued a dog and cat from inside the house.