Despite massive water drops from the air, the Pender County wild fire continues to burn off Highway 210. The worst appears to be over. Fire crews from across the region will scale down efforts through Monday night, and start back up early Tuesday morning.
The fire raged from a controlled burn to a major blaze. Roads were closed, and evacuations were ordered. Around six o'clock Monday evening, residents were allowed back. Some of them are feeling very fortunate.
"I was worried that the house was damaged or that everything was gone," Eric Adeleye, said, who's home evacuated because of the fire. For two years, the Adeleye family lived on Harrison Creek Road.
The fire that burned out of control forced the road to be closed.
"It was pretty scary, very scary," Rachel Adeleye said.
The fire was started deliberately as a controlled burn. Crews were clearing land for a development in the nine thousand block of sidbury road. Windy dry conditions rapidly fueled the fire as it raged out of control; chewing through some 1500 acres of woods and headed towards neighborhoods. Something the Adeleye's say would have been a travesty.
"This is pretty much a family community as you can see and it would have been devestating for this whole town to burn down a lot of memories here," Rachel Adeleye said.
"I'm very relieved. I'm thankful to God that everything's been spared and no one got hurt," Eric Adeleye said.
There were no injuries firefighters. Some homes did sustain some damage but the fire is no longer threatening them. Newschannel Three asked both the Department of Forestry and the Pender County Emergency Manager who exactly started the controlled burn. They said they didn't know; that putting out the fire and the safety of residents was the first priority.