A windy day caused smoldering fires in eastern Tennessee to develop into full blown wildfires that are threatening homes in Gatlinburg as well as Dolly Parton’s famous theme park, ‘Dollyland.’
The southeastern United States has faced drought conditions for a couple of months. It is raining in Atlanta today, and I cannot remember the last time I saw rain. Wildfires in the northern, mountainous part of the state have affected the air quality in the city of Atlanta. These conditions have extended upward to the areas mentioned above of Tennessee and areas of North Carolina. From CNN:
“If you’re a person of prayer, we could use your prayers,” said Gatlinburg Fire Chief Greg Miller said Monday evening as crews battled wind gusts of up to 70 mph.
On Monday afternoon, a wildfire from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park spread rapidly into communities around it. By early Tuesday, emergency officials said about 100 homes were affected by the blaze.
Flames blew into Gatlinburg, scorching at least 30 buildings in the city, including a 16-story hotel and an apartment complex. The fire was also near the edge of Dollywood, the theme park owned by Dolly Parton in Pigeon Forge.
One person shot video from inside a hotel that showed fires raging right outside the door:
— Logan Rose (@loganchanelrose) November 28, 2016
Here is a photo that looks like a sunset shot:
Due to continued erratic winds, the fires are very unpredictable and more fire growth is expected. pic.twitter.com/BYd9ANQeT4
— GreatSmokyNPS (@GreatSmokyNPS) November 29, 2016
This was just sent to us by a friend in Gatlinburg. This is on Airport Road up by Sidney James Lodge. pic.twitter.com/xhrgtqj6el
— Rep. Jason Zachary (@JasonZacharyTN) November 29, 2016
There is some rain expected in the area, but will be accompanied by more winds and that has the possibility of causing more problems before the rain sets in.
Hopefully, they have seen the worst.