WKYT - Harlan - Headlines

Forest Fire Lingers on Pine Mountain

By: Samantha Saracino Email
By: Samantha Saracino Email

A large forest fire is burning across Pine Mountain in Harlan County and people who live nearby are worried. More than 300 acres of the mountain has gone up in flames. It started Wednesday at the foot of the mountain, but it eventually spread to the top.

The sight and sound of fire can be found across Pine Mountain. More than 40 forestry officials are trying to contain it.

"Pine Mountain is a hard mountain to fight fire on because it's so steep and has out-croppings and the cliff lines in it. So it makes it harder to fight fire here in this terrain," said Michael Froelich, a Service Forester.

People who live in the area are concerned about the flames.

"Well getting close to your building and maybe destroying some of those or possibly even setting your home on fire from the embers. You just don't know," said Jill Williams, who lives on the mountain.

But officials say they are watching the fire closely.

"We'll get control lines cut around the houses and we'll keep an eye on the fire until everything is safe around the houses, but we won't leave until then," said John Mink, a Harlan Forest Ranger.

Forestry officials hope to have the fire contained soon. They are still not sure how it started. Many counties have burn bans in place right now, including Harlan County. If you see someone setting a fire, you can call the arson hotline at 1-800-27-arson.

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