National

Social media a lifeline for fire evacuees in Texas

By the end of last week, Possum Kingdom Lake resident Jackie Fewell had grown frustrated with all the rumors and misinformation circulating about the fires ravaging the area.

So on Saturday, Fewell, co-owner and website manager for Pondera Properties, took matters into her own hands.

"I thought I would create a link and build a Web page that would tell everyone the real story," said Fewell, who has been evacuated from her home in Gaines Bend. "And before you knew it, it just grew exponentially."

At midday Tuesday, the "Fires at PK" page had 123,000 views. For now, it is Fewell's full-time job, and she and other volunteers are working from a hotel room in Mineral Wells, posting maps, photos and information on what has burned and what's in jeopardy.

"We're all sitting around on beds in the hotel room, working on this stuff," Fewell said. "I've been trying to create a place where people can feel confident that it's accurate. Either people I know have laid eyes on it, or I had good, reliable sources. Because it was credible, people started developing confidence in it and it has become what it is.

"I'll do it until it doesn't need to be done anymore."

Read the complete story at star-telegram.com

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