Officials: Sawmill fire still burning out of control

[gtxvideo vid=”2XUPogX7″ playlist=”” pid=”OTSe9U1y” thumb=”” vtitle=”Hooper Mill Fire”]

DENMARK, Tenn. — A fire at a Madison County saw mill was still raging out of control Thursday night. With strong winds fueling the flames, intense smoke blanketed the surrounding neighborhoods. Firefighters have been on the scene for more than 18 hours, and it does not seem there is any end in sight. “This is going to be a hard fire to put out,” Madison County Fire Chief Eric Turner said. “And it’s going to take a lengthy amount of time.” The intense flames and smoke blanketed West Tennessee neighborhoods. “It’s like Dante’s Inferno out there,” resident Brenda Moss said. “The sky was red and there were flames over the buildings — it was rather frightening.” Volunteer firefighters worked around the clock to bring the flames “‹under control. “The fire is going to have to take its course,” Turner said. “The wind is blowing it towards the buildings and the saw mill, and that’s what we’re trying to protect at this point.” And that wind is what firefighters said has given them so much trouble. “We’ve had wind gusts of over 20 miles per hour today,” Turner said. “It’s really hampered us trying to get the fire put out.” Since the wee hours of Thursday morning, smoke has billowed into houses across “‹Highway 70″‹. Residents said they could not even stand to be outside. “We’re keeping everything closed,” Moss said. “Turned off the central heat and air because I don’t want it pulling the outside air in. But you really can’t escape it.” Thousands of gallons of water have been used to extinguish this fire so far, and officials have said the fight has “‹really”‹ just begun. “It’s going to take some time to get that put out,” Turner said. “So just be patient with us. We’re doing the best we can, and nature is going to take its course.” Turner said they expect to be on the scene of this blaze until at least Friday morning. They have more than 25 firefighters working on the scene on a rotating schedule. They have also repositioned equipment so they can respond to other fires in the county.

Categories: Local News, News, Video