Some Residents Urged To Wear Special Masks as Wildfire Approaches

Smithville Fire Capt. Adrian Sepulveda uses a rake to put out hotspots as they fight the Hidden Pines Fire burning at the end of Keller Road near Smithville, Texas, Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2015. The Texas A&M Forest Service says challenging topography and uncontrolled fire lines has slashed the containment of the Bastrop County fire to 10 percent as night fell Wednesday. The Forest Service had estimated 50 percent containment earlier Wednesday. (Rodolfo Gonzalez/Austin American-Statesman via AP) AUSTIN CHRONICLE OUT, COMMUNITY IMPACT OUT, INTERNET AND TV MUST CREDIT PHOTOGRAPHER AND STATESMAN.COM, MAGS OUT; MANDATORY CREDIT



Wildfires near the Georgia-North Carolina line are spewing smoke so thick that residents are being urged to wear special masks if they must do outdoor activities.

The fires have prompted evacuations in Georgia, North Carolina, and Tennessee in recent days.

The largest of dozens of ongoing wildfires in the South has now burned 13,300 acres — or more than a third of the vast Cohutta Wilderness area — in the north Georgia mountains just south of the Tennessee line, fire managers said Saturday.

It was only 20 percent contained.

In Macon County, North Carolina, special health masks were being made available Saturday.

Emergency Management Officials say they’re distributing N95-rated masks as regular surgical masks don’t provide adequate protection from smoke particles.



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