Brush fire doused near Smith Richardson golf course
A brush fire in woods off the H. Smith Richardson Golf Course was extinguished by firefighters Tuesday evening.
The fire, which ignited about 4:45 Tuesday at the municipal golf course off Hoyden's Hill Road, was under control by 5:45 p.m. The blaze sparked off the 15th tee, firefighters said.
"There was a lot of fire" initially, according to Assistant Fire Chief Douglas Chavenello. "It was up to the tops of trees, but once we got some hand lines in and at least got it confined then it bought us time."
There was no damage to buildings or the golf course.
Firefighters drove trucks as close to the fire as possible, but had to get through the trees and heavy underbrush to get at the flames. There were no fire hydrants nearby.
"It took us a little while," said Chavenello, "we probably got out 1,500, 2,000 feet of hose."
Golfers put down their clubs as they saw the smoke rising.
"You could see the smoke coming up from ... the 6th hole," said Steven Classy. "You could see the fire trucks driving by, there were probably about four or five fire trucks. It's a good thing they got there quick enough."
It's not clear what started the fire, Chavenello said. Several discarded cigarette butts were found on the green, but firefighters say it's hard to tell what would have sparked the fire so deep in the woods.
"Could be anything, you know," Chavenello said. "I wouldn't even try and speculate, I mean, I don't think it was natural causes, but beyond that, I wouldn't even try and speculate."
The National Weather Service issued a "Red Flag" warning about fire dangers Tuesday because of dry weather conditions, low humidity and gusty winds that could create conditions for fires to spread rapidly.
The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection temporarily banned the burning of brush because of the conditions, even for residents who have permits.