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Firefighters Battle Two Large UpCounty Brush Fires

Members of the Montgomery County Fire Rescue Service battled two large brush fires in the UpCounty area on Thursday afternoon.

The first fire was reported to MCFRS shortly after 4:00 pm in near the boat rental area in the 20900 block of Lake Ridge Drive in Black Hill Regional Park in Boyds. Smoke from that fire could be seen across Little Seneca Lake as strong winds spread the fire in the dry woodland area of the park.

MCFRS called for additional brush units including four-wheel drive specialized brush trucks to attack the fire.

About 15 minutes after the first fire was reported, a second brush fire was reported near the 21200 block of Blunt Road near Brink Road in the northeast portion of Germantown, near Goshen, about five-and-half miles away from the first fire. This fire quickly escalated and became a large concern as it began to threaten nearby homes.

Fire officials were forced to recall units responding to the Black Hill fire and reroute them to the Brink Road brush fire. Mutual aid units from Fredrick County were also called to the Brink Road fire.

Four fire engines, two tankers, and a ladder truck eventually got the Black Hill Regional Park fire contained shortly before 5:15 pm, but firefighters continued to work to extinguish hot spots. According to fire officials, the fire burned about five acres in the park.

Meanwhile, the Brink Road fire consumed about four-acres, damaged two sheds, and came dangerously close to several homes, according to MCFRS senior spokesman Pete Piringer. Fire officials credit a quick-thinking Montgomery County Sheriff Deputy with evacuating a family whose house was in immediate danger from the windblown wild fire. Piringer said Deputy Timothy Moore called in the fire and was able to warn and evacuated neighbors of the oncoming fire.

Shortly after 6:00 pm fire officials said that the Brink Road fire was contained, but said the firefighters still had a lot of work do to extinguish hot spots in the area. The Brink Road fire burned roughly five acres of woodland.

The fire had Brink Road, and Blunt Road closed several hours Thursday afternoon. Officials said Brink Road was reopened at 6:45 pm.

Earlier Thursday morning, the National Weather Service declared a Red Flag Warning for the enhance threat of wildfires until 8:00 pm Thursday evening, due to relative humidity values below 35 percent and South winds at around 15 mph, with gusts up to 30 mph. When weather conditions are like this, there is increased chance of both outside fires and inside fires, according to Piringer.