Crews work to control multi-acre wildfire in New Hanover County

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Fire in Porters Neck area on April 4, 2020. (Photo: Zach Lucas)

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The NC Forest Service (NCFS) is still working to control a wildfire that ignited in the Porters Neck area Saturday afternoon.

As of Sunday morning, NCFS ground crews say the fire is approximately 17 acres.

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“There are fire lines around the full perimeter of the fire, and it has extinguished itself for the most part, leaving little opportunity for reburn,” NCFS Incident Commander Alan Matthews said in a news release. “NCFS crews are fighting pockets of ground fire at this point.”

The wildfire is being managed by a local NCFS Incident Management Team consisting of 13 personnel, two Type 6 engines, four tractor plow units, and two full tracks for hauling water.

NCFS says the wildfire backs up to the Cameron Trace housing community off Murrayville Road, but well-established fire lines are in place allowing separation between the fire imprint and homes.

NCFS ground crews will focus on strengthening fire lines with the plows and dousing any hot spots with water using the full track equipment. Other than smoky air conditions, there is no immediate threat to the Cameron Trace housing community.

The cause of this wildfire is under investigation.

Anyone with sensitivity to smoke should remain indoors until further notice. Officials asks to avoid using drones in the area to ensure safe air space for NCFS aviation resources.

With spring fire season in full swing, wildfires are more likely to occur due to the leaf-out of vegetation and leaf litter that remains on the ground from the fall and winter seasons. Ground fire is a major concern in southeastern North Carolina because of heavy organic soils that can catch fire and smolder underground for as long as there is fuel to support it.

NC Forest Service officials urge the public to refrain from all open burning until further