Assistant fire marshal says fire legal because it was set to burn only brush. Was it still legal when it crossed a property line and started destroying vehicles and buildings?
Our state, county and local governments need to set some stronger rules on open burning and educate the public about the danger. Obviously, the wind was blowing or the fire would not have spread.
If a neighbor started firing a gun toward your property the danger might be less. Or least you could shoot back. This kind of carelessness happens far too often.
Brush fire rages out of control, burns buildings
BY KATE WARD Northwest Arkansas Times
Posted on Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Firefighters from six area agencies battled a brush fire that consumed multiple buildings in Fayetteville on Tuesday evening.
The blaze was reported at 14088 Highland Church Road, located off Goose Creek Road in western Fayetteville, at about 5: 30 p. m.
“ An older gentleman was burning brush and the fire got out of control, ” said Laurie Roy, assistant fire marshal for the Washington County Fire Marshal’s Office. “ He tried to put it out with a shovel, but the fire spread right up the hill and right into the neighbor’s yard. ”
Roy said the blaze spread uphill and affected two outbuildings. One of the structures was a total loss, she said, while the other sustained radiant heat damage. Also damaged during the fire were two vehicles — a pickup truck and a motor home. Both sustained heat damage. No injuries were reported during the fire.
Roy said the person who started the fire, Frankie Andrews, wasn’t cited.
“ It wasn’t illegal because he was just burning brush, ” she said. “ As far as restitution, I’m not sure what he’ll be responsible for. I know the property owner had insurance. ”
The owner of the damaged property was listed as Donnie Morgan.
Firefighters reportedly had the blaze under control at about 6: 30 p. m. and cleared the scene by about 7: 30 p. m.
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