East Texas wildfire

Smith County wildfire

Credit: KETK via CNN

A large wildfire forced evacuations east of Tyler on September 8, 2013.

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by KETK

KETK

Posted on September 9, 2013 at 8:39 AM

Updated Monday, Sep 9 at 8:39 AM

SMITH COUNTY — A massive grass fire in East Texas forced residents out of their homes on Sunday.

An eight-mile stretch burned along a roadway east of Tyler as all 16 fire crews in Smith County battled to contain the 350-acre blaze.

Juanita Willims, who was forced to evacuate Sunday afternoon, said the danger was clear right away.

"the fire department said 'evacuate,' and I was like, 'What's going on?' I walked outside, and all I could see was flames," she said.

It's unclear how many people have been displaced by the fire, but all were allowed to return home on Sunday evening.  No injuries have been reported.

Officials still don't know what started it.

The sheriff's office is reminding residents that outdoor burning of any kind is banned.

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