118 Fire burns nearly 6,000 acres near Angora

ANGORA - No structure damage was reported when a wildfire ignited six miles east of Angora at 2:51 p.m. Tuesday afternoon.

The Bayard Fire Department says a home north of the "118 Fire" was threatened, but fire departments from Bridgeport, Broadwater and Bayard were able to hamper the blaze and protect the structure.

The 118 Fire split into two directions around rough, hilly terrain as it spread to the west. Highway 385 was closed from the L62A junction to mile marker 93, and BNSF stopped trains from passing through, while fire fighters attacked the blaze. Visibility was near zero on the road because of heavy smoke. The road reopened at 6:22 p.m.

Efforts to contain the fire were interrupted when emergency response officials faced mechanical issues and vehicles becoming stuck in soft and sandy terrain. Crews also dealt with north-northwest winds at 15 mph. 

The fire was considered contained at 8 p.m. and the scene was cleared at 10:17 p.m. The fire burned an estimated 6,000 acres. There were no reported injuries to first responders or animals.

Alliance, Banner County, Dalton, Garden County, Gering, Hemingford, Lodgepole, Minatare, Mitchell, Morrill, Potter, Scottsbluff Rural and Sidney Fire Departments also responded to the scene.

Region 21 EM, Morrill County Sheriff’s Office, Nebraska State Patrol, Morrill County Commissioners, Nebraska Forest Service SEAT team, Flying Rhino Ag, Paul Reed Construction, BNSF, MCCH ALS, Nebraska State Fire Marshall, Hall ranch, CRPPD, numerous private individuals and landowners helped contain the blaze.