Wildfire in north Shelby County 90-percent contained, officials say
Published 1:03 pm Tuesday, March 29, 2022
By EMILY SPARACINO | Staff Writer
NORTH SHELBY – Crews are continuing their efforts to contain a nearly 600-acre wildfire that started in the Dunnavant Valley and Double Oak Mountain area on Saturday, March 26.
On the morning of Tuesday, March 29, the Alabama Forestry Commission shared an update on social media, confirming the 580-acre fire is 90 percent contained.
“Alabama Forestry Commission wildland firefighters begin their fourth day battling the Stonegate Fire in north Shelby County,” the post read. “Cahaba Valley Fire Department, Vandiver VFD and others are also assisting. Extremely rough terrain has hampered efforts in getting the wildfire contained.”
Shelby County Manager Chad Scroggins said the fire’s point of origin was in Stonegate Farms off Shelby County 41, where a resident was trying to burn brush.
Wind carried the fire up the mountain, and it continued to spread quickly, Scroggins said.
“It went three quarters of a mile in an hour,” Scroggins said in his report at the Shelby County Commission meeting on Monday, March 28. “It was moving very rapidly.”
Multiple agencies responded to the emergency calls on March 26 with crews and equipment to battle the blaze throughout the weekend.
In addition to the agencies mentioned above, Dunnavant Volunteer Fire Department, Chelsea Fire and Rescue, Fourmile Volunteer Fire Department, Shelby County Emergency Management Agency, Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, EBSCO, Shelby County staff members and residents have been instrumental in the efforts.
“It’s been our number-one priority since about 3 p.m. on Saturday,” Scroggins said. “There’s been a lot of cooperation and a lot of people.”
Shelby County EMA Supervisor Hub Harvey said the ALEA helicopter made 150 water drops over the area from Sunday, March 27 to Monday, March 28.
“I’m humbled and honored to get to work for a county like Shelby County,” Harvey said. “We come together and we help each other, whatever it takes. People don’t care who you work for, who your paycheck’s from, what department you volunteer for. It’s just awesome to see how people come together and run to the fight and get the job done.”
The Alabama Forestry Commission will continue to coordinate firefighting operations until the fire is fully contained.
“Work will continue today on completing containment of the fire, as well as reinforcing containment lines in preparation for the weather front tomorrow predicted to bring strong winds and humidity in the 30s,” the March 29 post read.