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Firefighters monitoring wildfire in DeKalb County for days

The fire burned 390 acres since Thursday. The fire is still burning, but is under control.

Posted: Sep 22, 2019 8:43 PM
Updated: Sep 25, 2019 10:34 PM

Wildfires are sparking up in Sand Mountain because of the dry conditions.

"The chances of having a destructive fire is really high," forestry specialist Jeff Keener said.

Keener is with the Alabama Forestry Commission in DeKalb County. He says they've seen 20 wildfires just this month.

"Every day we go through without rain, it gets drier and drier," he explained.

Close to 450 acres have burned in the county. The majority of those acres burned in the last 3 days.

On Thursday, firefighters were able to control a fire in Mentone at 76 acres, but the high winds and dry conditions caused the fire to break from its containment lines. It then burned more than 300 acres before crews were able to get it back under control.

"If it breaks the lines again, this fire can grow even larger, but we're hoping right now we can hold it," Keener said. "The possibility of any fire, not just this one, any fire breaking out of containment lines or us losing complete control of it is very high."

That's why Keener goes out every day to check on the hot spots. Right now, they don't know the cause of the fire, but Keener says most of the fires they've seen were started by people burning debris.

That's why he's encouraging people to hold off burning anything until we get some rain.

"It's not a no burn, but with the dry conditions we're having the chances of having a destructive wildfire are really high at this point," Keener said.

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