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East Knox County wildfire still smolders

11:18 AM, Nov 23, 2012   |    comments
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Smoke was visible from all over Knox County.

Knox County firefighters continued to monitor a smoldering wildfire in east Knox County on Friday, forestry officials said.

The fire started on a ridge in the 7600 block of Millertown Pike early Thursday afternoon. Officials estimate burned about 50-100 acres.

Fire officials believe the fire may have started when a pile of burning brush got out of control.

The charred ground in Suzie Brooks front yard shows just how close she came to catastrophe Thursday.

"Everything was going great and we got a phone call that the mountain was on fire," says Brooks. "I seen the smoke from [Interstate] 640, and yes it scared me to death."

She rushed home from her Thanksgiving with family to find her home unharmed and says she's thankful firefighters were there to answer the call.

Two dozen East Tennessee counties, including Knox County, are currently under a burn ban because of fire hazards.

State forestry crews brought in bulldozers and other equipment to help Rural Metro with the firefighting efforts.

Firefighters said there are some houses on the other side of the fire, but they are not currently threatened. However, firefighters are in the area as a precaution.

Officials are not sure when the fire will be contained or extinguished.

Burn permits are required in Knox County year round. They are required in other counties, by state law, from Oct. 15 to May 15.

Anderson, Blount, Campbell, Carter, Claiborne, Cocke, Grainger, Greene, Hamblen, Hancock, Hawkins, Jefferson, Johnson, Knox, Loudon, Monroe, Morgan, Roane, Scott, Sevier, Sullivan, Unicoi and Washington counties are currently under a burn ban because of fire danger conditions.

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