BRUNSWICK COUNTY -- Firefighters are having a tough time getting the upper hand on a fire that's been burning in Brunswick County since last Monday. Officials met with Shallotte and Ocean Isle Beach residents Saturday to give them an update. It's finally contained -- but still not controlled. That's what fire officials told Shallotte and Ocean Isle Beach residents Monday at a public meeting at union elementary school in Shallotte. Phillip Reams with the NC Forest Service said, "We do have lines around it, we are doing this additional work because it's still smoldering." Officials explained to residents that the fire is still burning underground, pushing large clouds of smoke into the surrounding communities. Residents who live close to the blaze say the fumes are a nuisance. Lakewood resident Gary Himmelein said, "Our family's been having some headaches the last couple days and some sinus problems." Since the fire broke out last Monday, officials dug trenches around it to keep it from spreading. They're also trying to flood the fire out by using an irrigation system linked to nearby bodies of water. But they say they still need help from Mother Nature.
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