Two Fires Get Out Of Control In Jackson County

Out of control woods fires have burned the past two days in Jackson County. That's prompting local emergency officials to consider putting burn bans in effect in parts of South Mississippi.

A property owner in the Escatawpa community was clearing land and started burning a pile of cut trees. That fire got out of control on Wednesday afternoon. Fire came very close to several nearby houses and almost forced firefighters to evacuate the surrounding neighborhood.

That fire along Highway 63 was not far from the site of another fire set on purpose, a controlled burn south of Highway 614. Fire fighters spent most of the day putting out dozens of small hot spots and used a bulldozer to cut new fire breaks throughout that area.

"We are trying to put in better fire control lines around the edge of the wild fire to make sure we don't have any more problems," said Jim Barns with the state forestry commission.

The state forestry commission worked to contain the 1,200-acre wildfire on Tuesday.

"When you have a low humidity day, it makes them very hard to put out," Barnes said.

That low humidity along with dry conditions is why near by residents are questioning why a private company from Greene County choose to start a controlled burn.

"Based on what happened a couple of years ago in another state, I don't think it was the right thing to do," Jackson County resident Brett Pendelaton said. "If somebody is going to do something like this, they have to wait until the conditions are right."

Jim Barnes says the state Forestry Commission is not doing any controlled burn right now and will investigate why this fire was started.

Officially there are no burn bans in effect for any of the Coast counties. However, Jackson County Civil Defense officials say they are seriously considering a burn ban, especially if the area doesn't receive any rain over the weekend.