Crews from the Tennessee Division of Forestry have been on the scene of a large wildfire on Rockwood Mountain on Walden’s Ridge west of Harriman since last night. The woods and brush fire from this past weekend on Walden’s ridge, above Interstate 40, between Rockwood and Harriman, rekindled Wednesday sending forestry officials back to the scene to help get fire lines cut around it. West Roane County Fire officials were first at the scene last night to check it out but realized that the fire was out of their hands due to it being up on the ridge and spraying of water was just impossible from the interstate.
Crews along with Hazmat responded back there this morning and again this afternoon as some trees fell across the right shoulder and right lane of Interstate 40. Interstate 40 West near mile marker 345 near the fire was closed this morning because of the blaze. but was re-opened later in the day as most of the fire was contained to just hot spots
That is one of two active wildfires in Tennessee, according to the Division of Forestry’s website, with the other located in the Duff community of Campbell County, just south of the state line. As of this morning, that five-acre wildfire was also 0% contained. Officials have not indicated whether any structures are threatened by that conflagration.
State forestry officials said a few small wildfires have burned in remote sections of East Tennessee in the past few weeks due to the dry conditions and dry ground foliage providing fuel. Most of the region is either experiencing a moderate drought or is abnormally dry. To check burn conditions in your area, you can visit www.BurnSafeTN.org.
We want to remind you that a burn permit must be obtained from the forestry division or your local fire departments to do outdoor burning due to drought conditions in the area.