McDOWELL COUNTY, N.C. — Forestry officials say they are scaling back on the number of firefighters working on a blaze in the mountains of western North Carolina.
Forestry officials told local media outlets that many of the 200 firefighters working on the Dobson Knob fire in McDowell County are wrapping up their operations since the blaze is about 95 percent contained.
The wildfire has spread across areas of northern McDowell County, reaching nearly 1,467 acres as of this weekend.
Crews from McDowell County Emergency Management and volunteer firefighters are fighting the fire, which is burning on private and U.S. Forest Service property.
U.S. Forest Service spokesman Bill Swartley said that firefighters are working to remove potential fuel from areas near homes that have been threatened. Officials said 35 homes and 10 other buildings have been threatened by the fire.
The fire is located on the north side of Dobson Knob near the North Cove Community, north of Marion, N.C. along Highway 221. Smoke and haze has been visible in communities such as North Cove, Woodlawn and Linville Falls.
Officials are trying to determine how the fire started.
Firefighters say they have a solid containment line on the north side of the Dobson Knob fire.
Officials told a community meeting in Marion on Thursday it appeared the fire was started by people but they have not determined whether the blaze reported Sunday was the work of an arsonist.
The fire has burned nearly three square mile, much of it in the Pisgah National Forest.
No injuries have been reported.
The fire was reported April 9 in the North Cove community north of Marion.
Officials say the fire was started by someone but have not said whether it was the work of an arsonist.
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