Local News

Eastern NC wildfire flares, firefighters fight back

Posted June 5, 2011 10:46 a.m. EDT
Updated June 5, 2011 1:54 p.m. EDT

— Firefighters have again battled back against a wildfire that has been burning in eastern North Carolina for a month.

The North Carolina Forest Service said firefighters were able to burn land in front of the wildfire Saturday evening in the Alligator National Wildlife Refuge in Dare County after the blaze threatened to spread south past containment lines toward the major highway in the area.

Even with Saturday's break, firefighters say the blaze is only 60 percent contained. It will take a long, heavy rain to extinguish it.

U.S. 264 from Stumpy Point to Engelhard was closed again Saturday because of dense smoke that is covering over far eastern North Carolina and the Outer Banks. It was reopened Sunday, but officials warned that it could be closed intermittently at any time.

The fire started May 5 from a lightning strike and has burned more than 31,000 acres.