It took fire fighters nearly five hours to contain a major brush fire that destroyed nearly 200 acres of land on a quail preservation. Forestry Commission officials cite wind as the reason why the controlled burn got out of hand.

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Columbia, SC (WLTX) - It took fire fighters nearly five hours to contain a brush fire that destroyed nearly 200 acres of land on a quail preservation. Forestry Commission officials cite wind as the reason why the controlled burn got out of hand.

"When I arrived on scene we had about 20 acres burning," said Donna Green, Law Enforcement Supervisor with the Forestry Commission.

But because of the strong winds and dry grass, a controlled burn schedules to clear 70 acres turned into more than 200.

"The last two days I have been running from daylight to dark on fires and that is because people think, the sun is out and its nice and we are looking at the ditches and seeing puddles, but that wind has dried all the top out so your grass and short vegetation, the fire can shoot right across it."

Earlier this week fire fighters battled a brush fire that destroyed a home among other things in Clarendon County.

Green says it is uncommon to have so many fires in February but with the recent extreme weather, they urge anyone who is doing controlled burns to be aware of the wind and humidity.

"It's easy for your fire to get away because everything is dried out and so when that fire gets to going it fuels faster and everything takes off."

Luckily the fire happened on private property that was far away from any neighborhoods.

Green says the owner will be ticketed for the fire.

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