Forest Fires Burning Across The State

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It's been a busy day for firefighters working to contain forest fires burning across the state.

As of Monday afternoon, there were reports of a dozen fires burning in eleven Kentucky counties, most of them in the eastern part of the state.

One of the fires causing the biggest concern is in the Red River Gorge in the Gladie Creek area. There is a 175 acre fire that started with a campfire on the ridge above extremely high cliffs.

"It just simply got out of control on a person and now we're having to go in and fight this fire," says Evelyn Morgan with the U.S. Forest Service.

Along with crews already battling the fire in that area, more are on standby waiting to help if need-be, should the fire spread.

"Just in case something does go bad, we'll be put into action right away," says Joseph Tosee with the Comanch Fire Crew Nation out of Oklahoma.

The fire is also shutting down roadways and trails around the popular tourist destination.

A closure order has been issued for all National Forest land east of Hwy 77 (Tarr Ridge Road), north of Hwy 715 to Gladie Creek, west of Gladie Creek to Lost Branch Trail intersection with the Sheltowee Trace Trail and west of the Sheltowee Trail from said intersection to Corner Ridge Trail head parking lot.

U.S. Forest Service officials say it is extremely important the public avoid that area until further notice, and to be careful if starting a small fire or campfire, making sure you put plenty of water and dirt on it to make sure it is completely out.

The Forestry Department says more dry weather and high winds are fanning the flames Monday.

Meanwhile, a 175 acre fire in Floyd County that started over the weekend was accidentally set by someone burning debris. Officials say a second fire in the county over the weekend may have been caused by arson.

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