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Tire Fire Site Still Not Cleaned Up

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NEAR PALMVIEW – A fire at an illegal landfill in the Alton-Palmview area is under control.

Multiple agencies responded to an illegal landfill near Western Road and Mile 9 Wednesday afternoon. Thick black smoke could be seen from miles billowing off from the scene.  

Crews from 12 local fire departments fought the fire. Two people in a house near the fire, Mario Sandoval and his wife, were also evacuated as a precaution.

"The ambulance checked my wife and I, and we're fine. They want us to stay away, over here where the fresh air is," he said. 

Sandoval said his home wasn't damaged by the fire but was consumed by the smoke. He said they'll possibly stay with family members for the night. 

"We don't know right now where we are going to stay. I have relatives in Pharr and Sullivan City, but we don't know right now," he said. 

Eric Sanchez with the Hidalgo County Fire Marshal’s Office said stacked up tires went up in flames. Officials said nearly seven acres burned. 

“The rubber burning, it’s very consistent, very high in carbon. It’s burning the materials off the tire. That’s what the black smoke is,” he said. “You notice when it got thinner, gray, white smoke is when the suppression efforts take place.”

Sanchez said the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has been notified. He also contacted Hidalgo County Nuisance and Abatement to report the illegal dumping of tires.

The cause of the blaze is under investigation. 

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