Campground Evacuated as Wildfire Grows in NJ’s Bass River State Forest
Crews are continuing to battle a stubborn wildfire in Bass River State Forest.
Since last night, crews have been working on backfiring operations to try and gain containment. The New Jersey Forest Fire Service reported 120 acres were burning out of control.
At least six residential structures are threatened by the fire, which is centered in the area of Allen Road.
Officials evacuated guests and workers from the Timberline Campground overnight.
Several road closures are in effect this morning. They include:
Allen Road is closed
Oswego Road is closed
Stage Road is closed between North Maple Avenue and Rt. 679
Rt. 679 is closed between Rt. 563 and Leaktown Road
This has been a very active forest fire season in New Jersey, largely due to extremely dry conditions.
Meteorologist Dan Zarrow notes, "We just closed out the driest May on record here in New Jersey. The air is dry and brush is dry, yielding perfect conditions for wildfires to spark and grow."
As crews struggle to get their latest fire under control, Zarrow says there are two pieces of good news, "First, winds will remain relatively light on Thursday, reducing potential fire spread. And second, humidity levels will tick upward."
Officials have warned of the extremely dry conditions for weeks and have, at times, put restrictions on outdoor burning and camp fires.
Unfortunately, there isn't a lot of rain expected in the near term to aid with the dry conditions.
"While spotty showers are expected to start the upcoming weekend," Zarrow says, "There is unfortunately no widespread soaking rain in the forecast."