Forest fire hits N.J. Pine Barrens

PEMBERTON, N.J., May 8 (UPI) -- A wind-fueled fire burned more than 200 acres in the South Jersey Pine Barrens on Saturday, and fire officials said they were unsure when it would be contained.

The New Jersey Forest Fire Service said the blaze was spotted about noon from a fire tower, WCAU-TV, Philadelphia, reported. Officials said it might burn through the night and into Sunday.


Smoke from the fire shut down a 3-mile stretch of Route 70, a highway linking the Philadelphia area with the Jersey Shore, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Larry Hajna, a spokesman for the Forest Fire Service, said wind gusts as high as 40 mph hampered firefighters. But he said the wind, blowing to the east, helped carry the flames away from Country Lakes, a large subdivision.

Several smaller forest fires were reported in South Jersey, the Atlantic City Press reported. One in Mays Landing near Atlantic City spread across 50 acres, while a morning fire in Wharton State Forest was contained.

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