Brush fire burns woods in Beacon Falls

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By Elio Gugliotti, Editor

Firefighters battled a brush fire in woods in Beacon Falls near the Seymour line Monday and Tuesday. –BEACON HOSE

BEACON FALLS — A brush fire deep in the woods near the Seymour line kept firefighters busy for two days this week.

The brush fire burned across about 7 acres of woods between Skokorat Road and Route 8 on Monday and Tuesday, Beacon Hose Co. No. 1 Fire Chief Brian DeGeorge said.

DeGeorge said the origin of the fire was an old, abandoned SUV that has been in the woods for years. He said it appeared someone lit the SUV on fire. The area has several trails and is frequented by all-terrain vehicle and dirt bike riders, he said.

Exactly how the fire started is under investigation.

“We know people are doing a lot more hiking and traveling through the woods, and we ask that people try to be a little more respectful,” DeGeorge said. “It can cause a serious problem.”

Someone riding a dirt bike in the area on Monday reported a vehicle fire, DeGeorge said. Firefighters responded at about 4:45 p.m. By the time they got to where the fire was — about 2 miles into the woods off Hockanum Glen Drive — the fire had spread to the woods.

Seymour and Oxford firefighters responded, as well. Firefighters used utility task vehicles and personal ATVs to get to the fire, DeGeorge said. They fought the fire with hand tools and water backpacks that they filled up from a nearby stream, he said.

Firefighters left the scene at about 8 p.m. Monday, only to return Tuesday afternoon after the fire flared up again. This time, firefighters accessed the woods through a trail off Skokorat Road in Seymour.

DeGeorge believes the fires were the same brush fire. He said the lower pressure at night helped keep the fire down, but with limited water at the scene hot spots smoldered and flared up.

Firefighters were on scene until about midnight Tuesday to put out the fire. The rain on Wednesday and Thursday helped make sure it didn’t start again, DeGeorge said.

DeGeorge said no one was injured and no one was evacuated from their home.

DeGeorge, who is also the town’s fire marshal, added that people need a permit for any open burning.