SC Forestry crews work to extinguish wildfire

Horry County, SC - HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - South Carolina Forestry officials say they are working to extinguish a wildfire in Horry County that began with a lightning strike more than two weeks ago.

According to SC Forestry spokesman Scott Hawkins, the fire is 100 percent contained, but portions inside the containment lines remain hot enough to produce smoke. The National Weather Service (NWS) issued a dense smoke advisory for the area bounded by US-501, SC-22, and US-701 until 10 a.m. Thursday.

Hawkins noted the NWS incorrectly reported the cause of the dense smoke advisory was because of a controlled burn.

Hawkins says a lightning strike sparked the fire, which has affected approximately 120 acres, on June 23. Hawkins says the terrain poses several challenges to firefighters, and due to the nature of the fuels and the soils this type of fire requires a great deal of man hours to extinguish.

Officials say the smoke will create a hazard when it becomes trapped near the ground, reducing visibility to near zero in the vicinity of the smoldering fire.

According to the National Weather Service, visibility will be near zero and drivers should use low beam headlights, reduce driving speeds and leave plenty of room between vehicles.

Officials say the greatest reduction in visibilities are expected in the area bordered by US-501, US-701 and SC-22, including the towns of Conway, North Conway, Homewood and State Route 319.

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