Wildfire In York County Has Already Burned 314 Acres In 3 Towns

May 3, 2018

Updated 2:50 p.m.

Firefighters are working to contain a brush fire in York County that has already burned at least 314 acres across three towns, according to CBS affiliate WGME.

By early Thursday afternoon, about 80 percent of the wildfire — which has spread across a remote forested area of Wells, Kennebunk and Sanford — had been contained to an area off Route 99, after firefighters from 18 local departments and the Maine Forest Service worked overnight to battle the flames, according to local reports.

The fire was reported at 4 p.m. Wednesday. By 10:30 p.m. that night, the Forest Service tweeted that it had already burned 60 acres.

“Fire size is approximately 60 acres. How big is an acre, you ask? 208 feet by 208 feet. Or, roughly the size of a football field,” the Forest Service tweeted at 10:29 p.m. Wednesday. The forest service said Thursday morning that the reported acreage jumped so dramatically because officials were more accurately able to map the fire in the light of day and using GPS — not because the fire had spread.

Officials are still investigating the cause of the fire. Fire officials said the fire did not pose a risk to the public, given the blaze’s remote location, officials told CBS affiliate WGME.

That remoteness has made it difficult for firefighters to extinguish the fire, the station reported. On Thursday morning, helicopters flying in from as far as Augusta were headed south to help douse the flames, according to the Maine Forest Service.

Thursday’s afternoon rain helped, too, officials told CBS affiliate WMTW. By 12:45 p.m., the fire was no longer spreading and firefighters were focused on putting out hotspots, the station reported.

Earlier on Wednesday, forest rangers also helped put out a second wildfire that scorched more than 50 acres in the town of Atkinson in Piscatiquis County, Newscenter Maine reported.