Not Even Hurricane Can Stop Swamp Fire

Monday, Aug 29, 2011  |  Updated 12:25 PM EDT
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Not Even Hurricane Can Stop Swamp Fire

Despite Hurricane Irene's drenching, a stubborn fire in the Great Dismal Swamp continues to smolder.

An interagency team that includes the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and forestry officials were assessing the fire on Monday, looking for hot spots. Irene soaked the swamp in southeastern Virginia over the weekend with 10 to 15 inches of rain, dousing the most intense fires.

The fire, however, has burned 6-feet-deep in some spots, where organic matter has fed it since an Aug. 4 lightning strike. Nearly 6,400 acres have been scorched by the fire.

Hundreds of firefighters were pulled out of the swamp in advance of Irene.

Spokeswoman Catherine Hibbard of the U.S. First and Wildlife Service said two crews totaling 60 people are due back at the swamp on Tuesday.

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