NC Forest Service Type 3 Incident Management Team assumes command of Tyrrell wildfire, commuters advised to remain alert

Published 7:08 am Monday, March 27, 2023

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The Last Resort Fire on private and federal lands in Tyrrell County was 34% contained as of 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 26. The North Carolina Forest Service Type 3 Incident Management Team has assumed command.

“Due to more accurate mapping, the fire is 5,200 acres in size,” stated a Sunday evening North Carolina Forest Service news release. “Firefighting crews will continue efforts to improve containment lines and monitor conditions through the remainder of the operational period.”

Easterly winds following Sunday’s weather front pushed smoke impacts west of the fire area.

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Significant smoke is possible and may result in tedious travel conditions. Those needing to commute Monday morning should remain alert and attentive to signage. Road closures may be implemented as needed.

Tyrrell County Schools will operate on a one hour delay Monday as a precaution for issues with travel and visibility.

According to the National Weather Service, drivers should keep the following safety tips in mind if travel is necessary in foggy conditions:

  • Slow down. Allow extra time to reach your destination.
  • Make your vehicle visible to others in front of you and behind you. Use your low-beam headlights. Use fog lights if you have them.
  • Never use your high-beam lights. High-beam lights cause glares, making it more difficult to see what’s ahead of you on the road.
  • Leave plenty of distance between you and the vehicle in front of you to account for sudden stops or change in traffic patterns.
  • To ensure you are staying in the proper lane, follow the lines on the road with your eyes.
  • In extremely dense fog where visibility is near zero, the best course of action is to first turn on your hazard lights, then simply pull into a safe location such as a parking lot of a local business and stop.
  • If there is no parking lot or driveway to pull into, pull your vehicle off to the side of the road as far as possible. Once you come to a stop, turn off all lights except your hazard flashing lights, set the emergency break, and take your foot off of the brake pedal to be sure the taillights are not illuminated so that other drivers don’t mistakenly run into you.

Operational resources working the fire include 66 personnel, according to the N.C. Forest Service. There are no injuries and no structures threatened at this time and the cause of the fire is under investigation.

“The public is reminded to keep drones away from wildfires. While drones provide unique opportunities for aerial video and imagery of wildfire activity, they are unauthorized,” stated the release. “Flying a drone near or around a wildfire compromises the safety of pilots and interferes with firefighting efforts.”

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