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Spring Means Brush Fire Season - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Spring Means Brush Fire Season

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Tuesday, Albemarle and Nelson counties saw a sign of the season: brush fires.

Fire crews in both places fought two fires just west of Route 29 south.

Spring wildfire season is a dangerous time for those living near wooded areas.  One Albemarle woman's home had a close encounter with a brush fire. It was quite a scare for longtime Albemarle County homeowner Freda Campbell.

"I left work at Brownsville Elementary School and came home and of course all the firefighters were here by then and it had spread pretty far and back behind the house at that point when I got here," Campbell said.

Campbell received word shortly after one 1 p.m. Tuesday that an approximately 35-acre brush fire had nearly surrounded her home.

The North Garden Fire Department says a live wire started the fire. The assistant fire chief says temperature, low humidity and wind were perfect conditions to allow the fire to spread.

It was a close call for Campbell's home.

"It was really close, I packed up some belongings in my car because I was afraid it would get to the house and we would have to evacuate," Campbell said.

Fire crews were able to get the fire under control and division forestry will continue to monitor the conditions.

Fortunately crews were also able to contain a smaller fire in Nelson County that broke out around 3:30 Tuesday afternoon. Fire crews say quick response was crucial in getting the fast-spreading fire under control.

"The fire, once it had built up, had plenty of food for the fire to be able to continue working its way across the hill," said Michael Barber, with Wintergreen Fire and Rescue.

No homes were threatened in that fire, but fire crews say there was a lot of underbrush giving the fire life. Investigators don't know what caused it.

There are some burning restrictions in place in Virginia during spring wildfire season to prevent these fires. The 4 p.m. burn law says it is illegal to burn anything before 4 p.m. from mid-February until April 30.

Reported by Tara Todd and Marcella Robertson.

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