Huge 13,000+ acre NJ wildfire nearly contained, largest in 15 years
The smell of smoke continues to linger across much of New Jersey as the Mullica River wildfire has nearly been contained.
The Mullica River wildfire remains 95% contained as of Wednesday morning, according to the NJ Forest Fire Service. 13,500 acres have burned so far. The New Jersey Forest Fire Service said that the fire will not consume more than a projected 15,175-acre containment area.
The fire is on track to be New Jersey's largest since a fire that charred 14,000 acres near the Warren Grove firing range in 2007.
The light smell of smoke continues
Models show a light smell drifting into central and northern New Jersey Wednesday on a wind out of the southwest, according to New Jersey 101.5 Chief Meteorologist Dan Zarrow.
"I don't think we'll face any serious air quality issues going forward," Zarrow said. Air quality reached dangerous levels in some areas on Tuesday.
Firefighters will remain on the scene for several days until there is significant rainfall, according to Forest Fire Service fire chief Gregory McLaughlin. There is some rain in the forecast that is expected by Thursday.
"There will be a few showers around Wednesday and Wednesday night, with a quick soaking expected Thursday morning," Zarrow said. "That will definitely help."
Campgrounds reopen, trails stay closed
The Atsion Recreation Area and Batso Village have both reopened but hiking trails between them remain closed. Wharton State Forest’s Mullica River Campground remains closed.
Kayaking and canoeing along the Mullica and Batsto Rivers remain closed between Atsion and Batsto. Pinelands Adventures has suspended kayak and canoe trips.
McLaughlin asked anyone with information about the illegal campfire believed to have started the fire Sunday morning to contact their Division B office at 609-726-9010.