Despite rain, drought and fire fears linger - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Despite rain, drought and fire fears linger

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HOUSTON (FOX 26) -

The Houston area is in for some much-needed rain this week. However, the region remains in a drought and wildfires are still a major concern.

On Monday, Montgomery County extended its burn ban for up to three more months.

In 2011, parts of that county were scorched by what became known as the Tri-County Fire, a large wildfire pushed by gusty winds. In all, it burned 20,000 acres and destroyed almost 100 homes and other structures.

"If not for the efforts of a thousand firefighters that were here, we would have lost many more," said Montgomery County Fire Marshal Jimmy Williams. "So those folks are understandably nervous every time we talk about outdoor burning."

"It is a scary thought that it's so dry out there and it's the dead of summer; no rain," said resident Scarlett McFarland, who fled her home just ahead of the Tri-County Fire. "It always has to cross your mind, what are the possibilities of that ever happening again?"

McFarland's house is one of the few in her section of the Remington Forest subdivision that survived the fire.

All around her now are empty lots where her neighbors' homes once stood. McFarland says many of those who lost everything simply left and never returned.

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