Weekend wildfire burns 650 acres in southeast Nebraska

Overnight rain helped firefighters get control of a wildfire burning in Nebraska along the Missouri River.

Nebraska Gov. Jim Pillen told KETV that the fire south of Lake Waconda in southeast Nebraska was between 70% and 90% contained by Monday afternoon. The fire burned roughly 650 acres since it started Saturday evening after sparks blew across the Missouri River from Iowa.

But the fire didn’t grow any overnight Sunday in Nebraska thanks to the rain and diminishing winds as firefighters from 26 different departments worked to control it. It wasn’t immediately clear how many acres had burned on the Iowa side of the border.

A few people near Lake Waconda had to evacuate Saturday, but no homes were damaged by the fire in Nebraska and those residents were able to return home over the weekend.

“It’s looking pretty good right now,” Nebraska Emergency Management Agency spokeswoman Jodie Fawl said Monday afternoon.

In addition to the main fire near Lake Waconda, a second fire started near Beaver Lake Sunday when more sparks blew across the river from Iowa.

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