Firefighters Fight Brush Fire Fueled By High Winds Near Sperry


Friday, September 7th 2012, 8:27 pm
By: News On 6


The Friday afternoon rain was a welcome sight for the half-a-dozen fire departments called out to combat a wildfire in Sperry.

Some homeowners were asked to evacuate, as crews frantically tried to beat back flames fueled by 40-mile-an-hour winds.

An Osage Nation officer said that Friday's power outages caused confusion and delay for some of the departments.

But once crews arrived on the scene, they realized they had a much bigger issue—strong winds and dry brush made perfect conditions for a wildfire.

By 3:00 p.m. calls began flooding in about a potential wildfire in Sperry.

"I was just coming home from work, and I saw the big clouds and strong winds," said Sperry resident Matt Provinsal.

One hour later, fire crews from half-a-dozen different departments were on hand.

But communication was difficult. The afternoon's straight line winds had knocked down power lines and were now fueling the fire.

What had started as a 10-acre flare-up near West 88th Street North and 52nd quickly spread, covering more than 600 acres.

Provinsal and his family were in the path of the fire and were asked to evacuate.

"We've never had to evacuate because of a fire or anything," Provinsal said.

It was a startling reminder for his family of the wildfires that swept across Creek County last month

"When the Mannford fire came here a month ago, we went out and bought a bunch of hoses, sprinklers, stuff like that," Provinsal said.

Crews called in back hoes to cut fire lines, hoping to control the blaze.

But the path of the fire had no clear direction, burning quickly through dry brush and trees, creeping ever closer to homes.

"I don't know where we'll go. We go to church there in Tulsa, so we may spend the night at our church," Provinsal said.

Families and fire crews could only watch and wait to see where the fire would take them next.

Then at 6:30 p.m., prayers were answered with a good dousing of rain.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but Sperry Police said they are now talking to a man who they think could be involved.

They think he was shooting an incendiary device, out of a grenade launcher, into an open field.

At this point there are no reports of injuries or structures being burned.