UPDATE: Georgia Forestry Commission urging people not to burn - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Georgia Forestry Commission urging people not to burn

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DADE COUNTY, GA (WRCB) -

UPDATE: The fire on Fox Mountain has been burning for ten days now. Georgia Forestry Commission officials still do not know what started the fire, but they're begging people not to burn. 

A burn permit will be hard to get in the state of Georgia. The Forestry Commission says its unsafe to mix fire with the severe dry conditions. 

Joanna Warren with the Georgia Forestry Commission says, "The drought has been a major factor, we’re really asking people to really cautious when they go out and burn outside."

Certain counties in Georgia have a burn ban from May 1st through September 30th. 

The ban makes it illegal to burn outside. 

Joanna Warren, "The burn ban is to help the air quality around the Atlanta area. It's not the entire state, just counties around the Atlanta area."

Dade County isn't obligated to enforce the ban.  Joanna Warren says the 1700 acre brush fire could have started many different ways. 

Joanna Warner, "Burning debris, campfires, charcoal grills. Or it could be machine use, chains dragging on the ground. Someone sharpening a medal object that throws sparks to start a fire." 

She says they are holding back from issuing burn permits because they don't want another brush fire to pop up. 

Joanna Warren, "Selectively issuing burn permits based on the weather, how many fires we have, and how our personnel is able to respond to them." 

But she says if you have to burn outside.. 

Joanna Warren, "Be extremely cautious, if you don't have to please don't do it. Please be safe, its a very dangerous situation right now. 

Joanna Warren says crews will remain on the mountain until there has been enough rain to put out the flames. Although there are cabins nearby-- no one has been forced to evacuate. 


PREVIOUS STORY: The fire on Fox Mountain in Dade County has spread to 2,200 acres and is threatening more than a dozen homes and cabins on the Alabama side. 

So far, no one has been evacuated.

On Wednesday, officials with the Georgia Forestry Commission said the fire had not increased in size and was 40% contained.

"Never seen Fox Mountain burn and it's burning all the way around it," Lawrence Conrad, a neighbor said.

Lawrence Conrad was watching a place he calls home go up in smoke. The area has a lot of sentimental value since his family has lived there for decades.

He's worried about the brush fire spreading.

"It's right in sight. In fact, you can feel the heat from it," Conrad said.

The brush fire spans from Dade County, Georgia to parts of Alabama.

Crews are using bulldozers to help contain the fire. They've been working since last Tuesday to get it under control, but extremely dry conditions and the wind have made that difficult.

Officials with the Georgia Forestry Commission are unsure what sparked it.

"I would hope that none of our homes will be bothered," Linda Jones, a neighbor.

Plenty of smoke could be seen from Linda Jones' home. She lives on the Alabama side of the mountain and cherishes the view from her backyard.

"Coming up on our most beautiful time of the year, so we just hate to see it and i hope and pray that it gets stopped," Jones said.

A helicopter from the Bureau of Indian Affairs dumped water on areas that firefighters couldn't reach. Neighbors who own property on the mountain fear it may be too late.

"It's burning right now just as i look at it. Right now, it's burning," Conrad said.

Stay with WRCBtv.com for updates to this story.


PREVIOUS STORY: A brush fire on Fox Mountain continues to be a threat in Alabama Tuesday.

Georgia Forestry Commission (GFC) spokeswoman Joanna Warren says the fire has grown to 2,200 acres within containment lines.

Warrens says the fire poses a threat to more than a dozen homes and cabins on the Alabama side of the mountain, but no evacuations are in place.

GFC officials are partnering with the Alabama Forestry, U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Indian Affairs to fight it.

Warren says multiple crews are using dozers, hand tools, helicopters and other tools.

The fire is 40% contained.

GFC officials are urging the use of strong caution during the very dry conditions.

Stay with WRCBtv.com for updates to this story.

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