Colleton 9-1-1 Operators began receiving calls from I-95 motorists reporting a woods fire near the 62 mile marker southbound north of Walterboro around 13:00 Saturday. Engine 2601 responded, but was diverted to the 600 block of Risher Mountain Road, a frontage road paralleling I-95, on a report the woods fire was actually at this location. Upon arriving, the crew found a rapidly moving woods fire involving approximately 6 acres of woodland. Several mobile homes were heavily involved and fire was threatening a wooden structure near the highway. A full structural response was assigned and a tractor from the Forestry Commission was dispatched as Engine 2601 set up to protect the wooden building.
Three singlewide mobile homes near the rear of the property were inaccessible to fire apparatus due to a small overgrown driveway on the property. Firefighters stretched 200 feet of 3" supply line through the woods, attached a gated wye to supply two 1-3/4 handlines for the firefighting effort. All three mobile homes, a small pickup truck and six debris piles were heavily involved. It was later discovered the mobile homes were used as storage for a construction company and were packed with building materials and paint. The heavy fuel load contributed to the rapid spread of the fire and intense flames. Firefighters worked for 40 minutes to control the blaze.
After cutting a six foot wide fire break around the perimeter of the woods fire, the Forestry Tractor assisted with overhaul on the debris piles and remains of the mobile homes. Firefighters were successful in saving the wooden structure, which was also used to store building materials. No injuries were reported. Units were on the scene for 3-1/2 hours.
Engine 2601, Engine 1901, Engine 501, Tanker 2602, Tanker 1904, Tanker 502, Tanker 1702, Medic 19, Truck 12 and Battalion 1 responded. Battalion Chief Dan Bard served as Incident Commander.