HENDERSON COUNTY, N.C. (WSPA) — Henderson County is in a state of emergency as local fire crews continue to battle a brush fire that’s now estimated to be over 431 acres.
Those crews said as of Monday night, only 5% of the brush fire is contained, despite firefighters working overnight and through the weekend.
They’re predicting that it could take them another 2 to 3 weeks before it’s completely contained.
“We’ve had about 20 different departments arrive outside of our surrounding, local counties and we are having more that are on their way in right now,” said Robert Griffin, fire chief at Edneyville fire department.
There are no injuries but the North Carolina forest service said two homes have been destroyed, and one has been badly damaged.
“It’s sad that we’re seeing some loss of structures but thank god no loss of life or anything like that, you can rebuild a house but you can’t rebuild a life so thank goodness we’ve been lucky there,” said Mike Morgan, chief communications officer for Henderson County.
An investigation into the cause has not been completed yet, but crews on scene told us homeowners on Poplar Drive were burning about a week prior to the start of the brush fire. Due to the dry conditions some of the remains from that fire could have ignited and spread.
Since then, it’s turned into something many of the newer firefighters have never seen before.
“When it’s burning 12 inches deep, a lot of them have not faced fires like that until now because it’s not something you deal with all the time,” said Griffin.
A state of emergency has been issued for the county and as the fire continues, that’s what they said can help them with resources moving forward.
“We want to have every resource that we can get available to help fight this thing and by declaring a state of emergency that opens up so many channels again to state and federal help if we need it,” said Morgan.
Henderson County officials have issued a burn ban on all open burning in the area, and have canceled all burning permits for the county until further notice.