Oak Grove, SC (Paul Kirby) – Lexington County is warning people who live or travel through the Oak Grove area that they may experience some smoke after a woods fire Thursday afternoon. Personnel and equipment from Lexington County’s Fire Service and the South Carolina Forestry Commission worked together to extinguish a 3 to 5-acre woods fire in that area of the county.
The fire was reported around 2:30 p.m. Thursday in the area of Rose Drive and Delree Street. The first personnel arriving did a size up of the fire and began requesting additional equipment respond due to the size of the fire and the number of exposures threatened. Eventually, there were a number of fire engines, tankers and specially equipped brush trucks built to attack fires in wooded areas on the scene. The fire commander requested a tractor plow unit from the SC Forestry Commission early on.
It took several hours to control the fire and get a break plowed around its perimeter. Lexington County posted later that the fire is contained, and they had units on the scene to provide a fire watch. They also warned that residents and visitors to the area will experience increased smoke conditions as a result of the fire.
Lexington County’s post said, “Those with respiratory illnesses or other conditions that may be vulnerable to smoke are advised to shelter in their homes until smoke conditions dissipate. Smoke conditions can be expected in the area for the next 24 to 36 hours.” Anyone experiencing an emergency should dial 911.
If you do drive into smoke, do not panic, slam on your brakes, or completely stop. Cut your low beam headlights on, reduce your speed, and slowly drive out. You may need to look toward the side of the pavements for markers indicating the edge of the pavement is near. If you still can not see to drive, turn into a side road or driveway and stop. If you must stop in the side of the road, look for a wide shoulder pull as far away from the road as possible before you stop. It is never a good idea to get out of your car in low visibility conditions.