Charlotte Brush Fire Destroys Two Homes

CHARLOTTE, N.C. --

A brush fire has destroyed two homes and damaged 10 others in south Charlotte, firefighters said Wednesday afternoon.

Neighbors in the Reaven Crest subdivision said just before 1 p.m. the flames crawled along Marie Roget Way, not far from Rea Road in Ballantyne, and the wind picked up embers and blew them onto the homes. The brush fire burned yards and ate its way through vinyl siding, prompting a flood of calls to 911.

Capt. Rob Brisley of the Charlotte Fire Department said no one was seriously injured, but one person was taken to the hospital.

The Red Cross is at the scene to help the firefighters and those displaced. Brisley said eight fire engines, three ladder trucks and a rescue company and command staff responded to the fire, which took 40 minutes to get under control.

Forecasters warned early Wednesday that the critically dry conditions could rapidly spread wildfires. The National Weather Service issued a red flag warning, stating the worst conditions would be from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. when wind gusts and low humidity were expected.

Firefighters said they agree that the extremely dry grass fueled the fast-moving brush fire.

The Charlotte Fire Investigation Task Force is investigating what sparked the blaze in the front yard of one of the destroyed homes. The North Carolina Forestry Service is also helping the fire department.

Firefighters and Duke Energy are checking the damaged homes to make sure they are safe for residents to return.

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