At least five people have died in grass fires tearing across the southern U.S. states of Oklahoma and Texas.

Drought, high winds, and low humidity have helped spread the flames.

Officials in Texas say the fires have destroyed more than 100 buildings in their state, some three-quarters of them private homes. At least two of the deaths were women who could not escape as flames overcame their houses.

Authorities said Wednesday that decreased winds and slightly cooler temperatures helped firefighters check the spread of the flames. But weather forecasts for the next few days show more low humidity and little chance of rain.

Texas governor Rick Perry has declared the fires a disaster and dispatched National Guard troops to help battle the blazes.

Some information for this report provided by AP.