Gov. Abbott issues disaster declaration after Medina County fire burns over 1,000 acres, destroys 3 homes

New evacuation center open for fire evacuees at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Helotes

MEDINA COUNTY, Texas – Gov. Greg Abbott has issued a disaster declaration for Medina County after a large wildfire has burned over 1,000 acres and left some families displaced.

The flames are about 70% contained as of 10:30 a.m. Monday. No injuries have been reported and no lives have been lost.

But, three homes were completely destroyed and others are significantly damaged, Abbott said on Sunday. Thirty-seven homes have been saved so far.

There are currently 119 homes without power, either due to fire damages to the homes or damage to the power lines, the governor said. Crews are working to restore power as soon as possible.

The governor’s disaster declaration will allow for the county to have access to state resources to aid in the fire response. Abbott also said he will request a federal disaster declaration.

However, in order for the governor to request the federal declaration, damage assessments will need to be reported.

Residents who have been directly affected by the fire who have lost belongings or even their homes will need to report the damages online. To report damages, you can visit MedinaCountyTexas.org or Damage.tdem.texas.gov.

Those who have been displaced can find temporarily shelter at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church located at 13715 Riggs Road in Helotes.

Nineteen agencies from multiple areas in the state have been responding to the fire over the course of the last four days. The fire initially began Friday and is believed to have stemmed from a vehicle fire.

At last check, the city of Mico is to remain evacuated and Medina County residents who live on County Road 2615 between County Road 265 to just south of Paradise Canyon. This includes the High Mountain Ranch subdivision.

Fire officials are still urging residents to have a go-bag ready in their vehicle or by the exit of their home in case they have to evacuate.

The smoke from Medina County will be visible from San Antonio and could impact the air quality near Medina Lake, Bandera, Pipe Creek, Boerne, Comfort and Kerrville, officials say.

Everyone is urged to avoid the area as firefighters continue their work to extinguish the flames and contain them.

We’ll bring more updates to this story as they become available.

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About the Authors

Leigh Waldman is an investigative reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in 2021. Leigh comes to San Antonio from the Midwest after spending time at a station in Omaha, NE. After two winters there, she knew it was time to come home to Texas. When Leigh is not at work, she enjoys eating, playing with her dogs and spending time with family.

Gavin Nesbitt is a photojournalist and video editor who joined KSAT in September 2021. He has traveled across the great state of Texas to film, conduct interviews and edit many major news stories, including the White Settlement church shooting, Hurricane Hanna, 2020 presidential campaigns, Texas border coverage and the Spurs.

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