UPDATE: Esmont Brush Fire Contained, 50+ Acres Burned

April 10, 2012

Crews from all around central Virginia spent much of Tuesday afternoon battling a brush fire in southern Albemarle County.

Officials tell CBS19 the fire started around 12:30 p.m. along Sharon Road in the Esmont area. Crews from the Scottsville Fire Department were the first on the scene and immediately worked to stop the blaze from spreading.

With conditions prime for wildfires, officials believe strong winds downed a power line that then sparked the brush fire. Scottsville Fire Chief Tim Cersley reports the flames were 100 percent contained shortly before 7 p.m. He says between 50 and 60 acres were charred.

Officials say no homes were threatened and, outside of burned forestland, no damage was reported. Chief Cersley says crews will remain on the scene into the nighttime hours to monitor the smoking embers.

All of central Virginia continues to be under a Red Flag Warning, indicating the area is at an increased risk for the start and spread of wildfires. The conditions contributing to the fire risk include:

- Relative humidity levels below 30 percent
- Wind speeds greater than 15 mph
- Low amounts of moisture in the ground

A brush fire Sunday burned about six acres in the Schuyler area of Nelson County. Fire investigators say it started when a homeowner was burning a small pile of brush, and strong winds caused the flames to spread quickly.

A fire on First Mountain in Page County has burned more than 1,800 acres, according to our sister station WHSV and the Virginia Department of Forestry. That blaze is only 30 percent contained.

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