Monday, April 7, 2014

That Smoke Smell Is Coming From A Fire In The Pine Barrens

I grew up in the Pine Barrens, which do not look at all like they were depicted on the Sopranos.  And it's a forest fire in my old stomping grounds that you are smelling this morning  all over town.  The smell was strong in Carroll Gardens this morning, but I even smelled it in midtown.
Wharton, New Jersey's largest single tract of land within the state's park system, is in Hammonton, located about 75 miles from Staten Island's Tottenville sectionand is sandwiched between Atlantic City and Philadelphia.
The fire, which can be seen for miles, has burned more than 1,500 acres, or about 2 square miles, along Batsto Road in Wharton State Forest, according to the Associated Press.
Smoke could be seen for miles, said NBC 10 Philadelphia. Crews dropped water on the fire from airplanes and used backfires to contain the fire, and the fire did not threaten structures or people, the report noted, adding how the fire started is under investigation.
I try to get out, but they keep pulling me back in.

The cycle of a pine barren ecosystem involves periodic forest fires.  Those scrub pines can go up like torches; they're designed for it.  I hope they get this under control, because once these get going they can turn into massive conflagrations.

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