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NC Wildfire Consumes Acres of Land

By Marina Giovannelli

Wilmington, NC – Fire officials say they've spent more than a half-a-million dollars fighting the wildfires that have charred nearly 50 square miles of land in the Pocosin Lakes Wildlife Refuge.

Scorching heat is hampering firefighting efforts, with temperatures reaching 105 degrees.

Lightening sparked the blaze last Sunday. North Carolina Division of Forest Resources spokesperson Bill Swartley says it may take another week to contain the fire.

"These soils are primarily made of peat and once the fire, surface fire comes through, it ignites the peat. So what you're left with a slow burning ground fire."

Swartley says the ground fire also produces heavy smoke, which can be seen in Richmond, Virginia some 200 miles to the north.

About 80 homes have been evacuated and no injuries have been reported.

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