Blaze could threaten 2,000 homes

Published 12:10 am Friday, June 24, 2011

BURGAW (AP) — Forestry officials say more than 2,000 homes could be threatened by a wildfire fire that started in the Holly Shelter Game Land area and has burned nearly 20,000 acres.

State forestry spokeswoman Diane Steltz said Thursday 80 firefighters are fighting the blaze, and additional help is being requested from units around the state. A voluntary evacuation has been ordered for the area.

Steltz said winds were pushing the flames northeast toward Camp Lejeune. A change in wind direction could push the fire toward homes and other development along coastal U.S. Highway 17.

The state Division of Forest Resources planned an air survey late Thursday, when smoke from the fire is expected to partially clear.

Steltz said crews using bulldozers are digging a perimeter around the fire to help contain it.