Firefighters extinguish grass fire near Speedway

2 acres burn; church, houses spared

By Kevin Spradlin
PeeDeePost.com

* Photo gallery

ROCKINGHAM — Volunteers from Hoffman and Northside fire departments and personnel from the North Carolina Forest Service responded Wednesday afternoon to a report of a grass fire out of control near Rockingham Speedway that jeopardized a church and two nearby homes.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Volunteer firefighters from Hoffman and Northside fire departments work to put out flames creeping into a storage building of a nearby church.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Volunteer firefighters from Hoffman and Northside fire departments work to put out flames creeping into a storage building of a nearby church.

The incident was reported at 2:59 p.m. to Richmond County emergency dispatchers at about the same time Franklin McCay, assistant fire chief with Hoffman Fire and Rescue, happened to be driving along smoke-covered U.S. Route 1 North after refueling a fire truck.

McCay arrived on site and quickly created a safe line between the nearest home and an open field behind House of Prayer Church of Deliverance.

The church property, as well as that of a private home and the former Taylor’s Family Campground, was charred in the mid-afternoon blaze. It was not immediately known what caused the fire.

Earl Graves from the Forest Service utilized a bulldozer to create a fire line and prevent the blaze from spreading. Firefighters, meanwhile, worked in shifting winds to douse the flames. By the time a second fire truck was on scene, a small shed used by the church as storage was damaged by flames and high heat.

The church was founded by Elder E.R. Cotten. Family members said the property was insured.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Smoke was visible along U.S. Route 1 for a couple of miles south of the fire, located near Rockingham Speedway.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Smoke was visible along U.S. Route 1 for a couple of miles south of the fire, located near Rockingham Speedway.

Volunteers from Ellerbe Volunteer Fire Department responded to Northside on standby while Northside was on scene of the fire. A Duke Energy worker also was called to the scene.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Within 40 minutes, firefighters had contained the blaze and eliminated all but a couple of smaller hot spots.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Within 40 minutes, firefighters had contained the blaze and eliminated all but a couple of smaller hot spots.

 

Filed in: Featured News, Hoffman, Latest Headlines, News, Public safety

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