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Fire contained to 500 acres on dry, windy Wednesday

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Horribly dry conditions combined with high wind gusts to bring out firefighters from land and air to battle a prairie fire on the Walworth/Potter county line last week.
Although it looked like a massive fire just north of town, the fire was contained to around 500 acres near the Hwy 20/83 junction. The fire was reported around noon on Wednesday, Sept. 19, and burned mostly pasture land in Walworth County before it jumped Hwy 20 and moved into Potter County where it was contained.
According to a report from the Walworth County Sheriff’s Office, the fire was started in a ditch around 18 miles northwest of Hoven, and was believed to be caused by a spark from the drive shaft of a truck that broke down, however, that is still under investigation.
Fire departments from Gettysburg, Hoven, Tolstoy, Lebanon, Akaska, Selby, and Lowry spent the day fighting the fire, and sheriff departments from both counties assisted. An air tanker provided by the Bureau of Indian Affairs through Mobridge also responded. Area farmers brought water to the scene and cut fire lines through fields to stop the spread.
Reports from the National Weather Service indicated that wind speeds in the area reached peak gusts over 40 mph that day.
There were no reported injuries or structures damaged, and firefighters stayed on the scene for several hours.
-Molly McRoberts

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