Wharton State Forest fire contained but not under control
HAMMONTON — Saturday's thunderstorms helped a little to bring a forest fire that has been burning in a remote area of the Wharton State Forest since Thursday under control.
Department of Environmental Protection spokesman Bob Geist said the fire is "stubborn" and is 100 percent contained, and 50 percent controlled. It has burned through 3,500 acres and is the largest fire at Wharton in 10 years.
Geist said the fire continues to feed on "small interior unburned pockets of fuel" like downed trees and forest floor clutter like leaves and branches.
35 members of the Forest Fire Service continue mop up operations along with patrolling and holding containment lines, according to Geist, who said that no properties or lives are threatened by the fire, which started Thursday.
The containment efforts at this point include 10 type 6 engines, 1 tractor and plow unit, and 3 water tenders to bring the fire under control.
The Batona Trail inside Wharton remains closed.
Geist said the cause of the fire remains under investigation.
Contact reporter Dan Alexander at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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