Park officials delay prescribed burn in Smokies

Park officials delay prescribed burn in Smokies

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GATLINBURG (WATE) - A plan to burn 178 acres in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park was put on hold Wednesday because of weather conditions.

The controlled burn was planned for Wednesday to reduce the risk of an uncontrolled fire. Park officials called off the burn, however, when the weather forecast called for gusty winds.

A National Park Service fire crew intends to burn brush just inside the park boundary south of Wears Valley in Sevier County. Wear Cove Gap Road, Indian Camp Branch, Little River Road and the park boundary surround the intended burn area.

Wears Valley Fire Department and Townsend Fire Department were scheduled to assist.

The park service has a multiyear plan to reduce the buildup of flammable debris. The area scheduled for the prescribed burn was last burned in 2009.

When the burn takes place, Roundtop Trail will be closed, but Wear Cove Gap Road will remain open.

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