Regional
7:58 am
Fri March 25, 2011

Wildfire Chars Grassland Near Tatum

KRWG News – TATUM, N.M. (krwg) Authorities say a wind-wipped wildlife in southwestern New Mexico that has grown to an estimated 20,000 acres is now 30 percent contained.

There's still no estimate when the Jackie Fire can be fully contained. But crews say most of the blaze's spread has been stopped.

The fire was spotted Thursday afternoon about 20 miles southeast of Tatum. It's burning mostly grass.

State Forestry spokesman Dan Ware says no structures are threatened and no evacuations have been ordered.

An air tanker is dropping loads of retardant on the fire, which has jumped Highway 380 in two spots and is being aided by wind gusts of 46 mph.

Ware says low humidity levels also are helping fan the flames. Twenty engines, six water tenders and four road graders battling the fire.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. krwg