As of Monday night, officials said the flame (called the Marika River Fire) had grown to 12,000 acres and is now 70% contained.
Forest fires can eventually reach 15,000 acres and are projected to be the largest fires since 2007. The 2019 Springhill Wildfire burned more than 11,600 acres.
“We’ve essentially ruled out natural causes, so we’ll continue to investigate the fire,” Gregory McLaughlin, chief of the New Jersey Forest Fire Department and chief of the state fire department, said at a press conference Monday afternoon. rice field.
However, authorities could not say that someone intentionally set fire to the Wharton State Forest.
“Illegal campfires and fires that are not completely extinguished continue to pose significant risks,” said Sean La Tourette, New Jersey Environmental Protection Agency.
Fires have spread to the towns of Washington, Chamon, Hammonton, and Malika.
Complete containment of the fire is expected by Wednesday.
The effects of the wildfire could be felt on the Jersey Shore.
“At first I thought it was fog, but then I started to notice the smell and found it not to be fog,” said Alicia Washington of Atlantic City.
Residents are advised to take appropriate precautions.
“It’s not time to seize the opportunity for the amount of smoke we all see,” said Dr. Amit Bora, an intervention pulmonologist at the Atlantic Care Community Medical Center. “Keep away from heat, burns, hot and hot air, hot and hot smoke. That’s something that even people with healthy lungs can do.”
No injuries have been reported and homes have not been compromised, but 18 structures have been threatened, including a blueberry farm and a partially evacuated Paradise Lake campsite.
“It’s been a really long time I’ve actually seen a fire swirl, and yesterday I saw some of them. It’s an extreme fire intensity,” McLaughlin said.
Forest fire brigade crew members will continue to work on backfire all day to assist in containment, officials said.
There are also some road closures.
- Route 206-From Chu Road to Atsion Road
- Route 542-From Greenbank Road to Columbia Road
Visitors are off limits to Buttst Village and all related hiking and mountain biking trails. The Asion recreation area is also closed.
The Malika River Campground, Lower Forde Campground, Malika River Trail, and boat launches along the Malika River are closed from the Asion Recreation Area to Buttst Village. Pineland’s Adventures has also interrupted its kayaking and canoeing journey.
These closures are valid until further notice.
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Wharton State Forest Fire: Crew fighting wildfires in Washington, Chamon, Hammonton, and Malika townships
Source link Wharton State Forest Fire: Crew fighting wildfires in Washington, Chamon, Hammonton, and Malika townships