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Fire at Gateway Park evidently sparked by fireworks at game

FORT WORTH -- A grassfire fueled by gusty winds burned roughly 5 acres in Gateway Park on Thursday night, evidently sparked by fireworks at the end of an exhibition game by the U.S. Olympic softball team.

The fire burned for about an hour on the north end of the city park along Interstate 30 between Beach Street and Oakland Boulevard.

“It is my best guess that this was caused from the fireworks,” fire Battalion Chief Donald Clark said. “The wind direction and location of the fire match up pretty good.”

The Olympic softball team was playing the ASA Regional All Stars on Thursday night in an exhibition as part of its 48-city “Bound 4 Beijing” national tour.

Nine fire trucks and 22 personnel fought the blaze, Clark said. Haltom City firefighters assisted on the north side of the fire.

It was brought under control with no injuries or structural damage, Clark said.

Firefighters were to stay at the scene until 1 a.m. to ensure that hot spots didn’t reignite, he said.

About 9 p.m. when the fire started, wind was gusting as high as 37 mph at Meacham Airport, with sustained winds of 29 mph, according to Steve Fano, a National Weather Service meteorologist.

“Winds were very strong all around,” he said. At Spinks Airport, gusts of 31 mph were reported, and Arlington’s airport reported gusts as high as 39 mph.

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