Wildfire Damages Many Homes Around Wooldridge

Dry and windy conditions fueled a large natural cover fire that forced the evacuation of the Cooper County town of Wooldridge on Saturday night. As of early this morning (Sun.), the fire was under control. 18 Randolph County firefighters were part of the large scale effort from throughout the state to battle the blaze. Following a morning media briefing, Randolph County Emergency Management Director David Gaines reported the fire started Saturday afternoon at 3:15…

Gaines said the impact on the Wooldridge area was devastating…..

It’s estimated between 3,000 and 3,500 acres burned….

One person with non-life threatening injuries was transported to a local hospital. Though an official cause is not listed in the Sunday morning briefing, Gaines knows what fueled the wildfire….

Smoke from the blaze forced the closure I-70 from near the Rocheport bridge to Boonville in both directions for a couple hours.

Gaines said Randolph County sent five tankers, three brush trucks, one UTV, and the Mobile Emergency Operations Center. Units went from Westran, Higbee, Southeastern, Northeastern, and Eastern Randolph County Fire Protection Districts, and the Randolph County Emergency Management Agency. He said more than 50 departments were part of the statewide response, from St. Louis County to Higginsville, and from Adair County to Lake of the Ozarks.

full interview with Randolph County Emergency Management Director David Gaines….