(Ripley County, Ind.) – A massive wildfire at the Big Oaks National Wildlife Preserve in southwestern Ripley County continues to smolder.
“What we’ve done the past couple days is monitor it,” said Joe Robb, manager of the Big Oaks Preserve, adding that the fires are contained.
Flames sparked two field fires during a helicopter training mission by the Air National Guard on Saturday. Due to an ongoing extreme drought in southeast Indiana, the fires spread quickly and have consumed 500 acres as of Wednesday.
“Those areas are very dry and causing some smoke. Some of the weather conditions especially in the evenings are causing that smoke to dissipate,” Robb said.
Because of the fire’s remote location, no homes or structures were ever in any danger.
The public is not in any danger aside from smoke that may linger to the east or west of the preserve. Robb warns that homeowners with respiratory problems who can smell the smoke should stay inside to avoid any complications.