A fire that had smoldered in a peat bog since Tuesday became a major brush fire Friday in Hinesville.
The fire, near Terrell Mill Pond between Airport Road and Kelly Drive, was started by lightning, Hinesville Fire Chief Lamar Cook said.
Jennifer Briggs, who lives in Stone Hedge subdivision, said she saw the lightning strike a wooded area near her home about 8:30 p.m. Tuesday.
“It was a heavy strike,” Briggs said as she watched a helicopter scoop water from a pond on Airport Road to drop on the flames. She said she is keeping an eye on the fire, which blanketed the area with heavy smoke.
“Right now, I’m a little concerned about the fire, but have faith in the fire department that the fire will not spread,” she said.
Cook said the fire is in a heavily wooded area a quarter mile from any structures.
“The fire poses no danger to any home at this time, and we will monitor it around the clock,” the chief said.
David Duke, Georgia Forestry ranger from Midway, was stationed in Happy Acres Mobile Home Park on Kelly Drive. He said the 800 acres around the fire are wetland.
“We attempted to drive a tractor into the area and only made it about 300 yards before it started to get bogged down. We don’t want to endanger personnel or lose equipment.”
This is not the first time the area has burned, Duke said. In the late 1990s the area burned for four months before it was extinguished by rain.