Strong winds contribute to large brush fires in Carroll, Howard counties; wildfire threat alert in effect

Fire departments in both Howard and Carroll counties battled large brush fires Thursday, with high winds making it difficult to get the flames under control.

Howard County fire officials responded to a blaze in the area of Henryton Road and Howard Lodge Drive Thursday afternoon. There were approximately two to three acres on fire, the department wrote on Twitter.

Crews from the Sykesville fire department in Carroll County were called in to assist with the fire, though the Sykesville first responders were soon alerted to another brush fire on Buttercup Road. This blaze burned about one acre.

“Guys. This is NOT the day to burn or carelessly toss smoking materials. We’ve got guys and gals out in two counties fighting fire and the winds,” the Sykesville department wrote on Twitter. “Help us out. Just don’t.”

The Howard County fire was under control by around 6 p.m. Thursday. Crews “worked hard to ensure no structures were involved,” the department tweeted.

Shortly after, the Buttercup Road fire was extinguished as well. There were no injuries reported.

The National Weather Service has both counties on alert Thursday and Friday for the “enhanced threat” of wildfires. They urged residents to be careful handling any potential ignition source, including machinery, cigarettes and matches.

“The combination of gusty winds … low relative humidity and low fuel moisture will enhance the threat for the spread of wildfires this afternoon and into this evening,” according to the agency. “Any dry grasses and tree litter that ignite will have the potential to spread quickly.”

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