Tractor-trailer crash ignites thousand-acre brush fire near Asheville

HAYWOOD COUNTY, N.C. — A large brush fire starting from a tractor-trailer crash in Haywood County is now burning across nearly 2,000 acres.

The U.S. Forest Service says the Black Bear Fire was first reported Thursday around 9 a.m. along I-40, 30 miles west of Asheville.

Forest officials say this fire is still “very active” and is not contained.

According to the investigation, the fire spread through vegetation near the highway and rapidly climbed up the mountain slopes, driven by the wind.

Thankfully, no one is hurt at this point and no structures have caught fire.

Drivers traveling along I-40 may see thick smoke covering the highway. If traveling in the area, drivers are asked to check road conditions at drivenc.gov.

Officials expect to contain the fire by Dec. 1. Nearly 200 responders are assisting in the containment efforts.

Keep an eye on Channel 9′s Severe Weather Center for coverage of the dry conditions fueling the fires in the Carolinas.

(WATCH: Dry conditions fan fire risks in the Carolinas)