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Crews wrapping up work on 303-acre fire in Allegan County

Firefighters from local departments and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources are working to mop up after a 303-acre fire in Allegan County’s Clyde Township.

Some homes were evacuated in the course of the fire, which was mostly contained to land in the Allegan State Game Area. No homes were damaged and no injuries were reported. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

“Teamwork and cooperation among all of the responding units helped us respond quickly and efficiently to this fire,” said Paul Rogers, fire prevention specialist for the DNR and a leader in fighting the fire.

Those involved in fighting the fire included at least 80 people drawn from the DNR’s Forest Resources Division and Law Enforcement Division, the Michigan State Police, the Clyde Township Fire Department,the Lee Township Fire Department, the Fennville Area Fire Department, the Ganges Fire Department, the Allegan County West Side Drone Team, Life Ambulance Services,and a variety of Allegan County resources including the sheriff's department, dispatch center, emergency operating committee and conservation officers.

Equipment used included a fire spotter airplane, three DNR tractor plows, multiple DNR water and command units from the Allegan, Plainwell, Muskegon, Yankee Springs, Rose Lake and Flat River offices and four utility task vehicle water units. Equipment from local departments included seven Jeeps, four brush trucks, one 6x6 water unit, eight pumper/tankers and one rescue unit.

Just before 2 p.m. Wednesday, crews were dispatched to 56th Street and 113th Avenue to investigate a report of smoke. Crews discovered a rapidly spreading wildfire in the game area behind residences along 56thStreet.

The fire moved northeast into thick oak hardwoods and firefighters witnessed fast-moving fire activity and a column of smoke that could be seen for miles.

Six homes were evacuated as crews worked both the east and west flanks of the fire. The fire was stopped roughly 600 yards from the evacuated homes on the southside of 116th Avenue. Residents were able to return to their homes just before sundown Wednesday.

Crews will be working in the area for the next several days to check for hot spots and clean up after the fire.

An accompanying photo is available below for download. Caption information follows.

  • Allegan firefighting: A dozer operator plows a line down to mineral earth to help stop a fire in Allegan County earlier this week. The 303-acre fire caused evacuation of several homes and was contained mostly to the Allegan State Game Area.

Contact: Paul Rogers, 616-260-8406