A fire that broke out Friday morning on Butch Shadbolt's land south of Merriman has been 100 percent contained as of 11 a.m. Saturday morning, after burning between four and five thousand acres. While the fire is contained, it is currently only 85 percent controlled and crews are hoping to have it 95 percent controlled by the end of the day.
Crews from all around the area including: Gordon, Rushville, Hay Springs, Martin, Cody Rural, Merriman, Batesland, Sandhills Fire Protection District, Vetal and Chadron were on hand to help combat the flames. Several area residents also came out to help, often with only shovels and small tanks in the back of their trucks. It appeared that mother nature would also provide some help in the form of rain, however the rain came within an eighth of a mile of the flames without ever actually reaching them.
The cause of the fire is not yet known. Go to the photos page for many more photos of the fire.