Huge New Jersey wildfire nearly contained, largest in 15 years

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The fire along the Mullica River in Washington, Shamonton, Hammonton and Mullica Townships was 95% contained by Wednesday morning, as winds pushed smoke toward the South Jersey suburbs of Philadelphia.

13.500 hectares have burned to this point.

Firefighters said Wednesday morning they have managed to keep the fire under control within their containment area, with the fire already scorching some 13.500 hectares throughout Pine Braren.

The light smoke odour lingers

Federal Fire Chief Greg McLaughlin said Tuesday that investigators suspected the fire was sparked by illegal activities along the campfire.

Road 206 and highway 542 were reopened on Tuesday, though authorities warned Wednesday that firefighters and fire trucks will stay in the area to monitor the location and to extinguish flames.

The Atsion Resort and the village of Batso have both reopened, but the footpaths between them remain closed.

However, the hiking and cycling routes between Atsion and Batsto are shut down.

Wharton State Forest

Wharton State Forest is the largest state forest in the U.S. state of New Jersey. It is the largest single tract of land in the state park system of New Jersey, encompassing approximately 122, (wikipedia)

New Jersey Forest Fire Service

The New Jersey Forest Fire Service is an agency within the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. Founded in 1906 with a focus on wildland fire suppression and fire protection, (wikipedia)

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