Cameron County firefighters battle fire for hours

Parents picked-up their children from Las Yescas Elementary School Friday afternoon, ready to start the weekend. However, not far away from the school, a black cloud of smoke billowed as a warehouse at the intersection of FM106 and FM 803, burned with fury.

Cameron County Emergency Management Coordinator Humberto Barrera said the fire broke out about 12:30 p.m.

"What caught on fire was a very large, huge warehouse, that contained all kinds of unknown chemicals, paint, (and) roofing materials," Barrera said.

The fire burned furiously as the high wind speeds helped quickly spread the fire to surrounding areas, making it a bigger challenge to contain.

"We think it's about five acres so far that have burned, Barrera said. The fire is under control - again we have several resources out here."

Barrera said despite the efforts of fire departments from Harlingen, Rio Hondo, Los Fresnos, San Benito, and Brownsville, the location of the scene made it a challenge, since the closest water source to fill-up was at least two and half miles away.

"We're going to be out here for several more hours, Barrera said. One of the biggest challenges is water - there's no fire hydrant nearby, so we're having to send the (fire) tankers back to refill, and come back and dump it into our (pool) tank."

The Cameron County fire ban expired in January. However, authorities said they will keep a close watch to ensure all guidelines are being followed.

Barrera adds that they are working to determine what sparked the blaze, and if guidelines were violated in the warehouse fire, criminal charges could follow.

No injuries were reported.