From B&R, news reports
SEVIERVILLE — Tennessee Baptist Disaster Relief units are preparing to provide further assistance for the situation in Sevierville, where wildfires have burned more than 3,300 acres during the past several days.
Last week, Tennessee Baptist DR sent a shower unit to assist the fire fighters who came off the line from fighting the fire, said Wes Jones, disaster relief specialist for the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board. Jones said DR teams are anticipating a response effort in the days ahead that will include assisting homeowners in sifting for valuables and helping to clean up their homesites.
Jones said DR teams will be deployed when (1) The fires are deemed to be totally under control and, (2) The insurance inspectors have completed their work.
At least 300 structures have been affected by the fires, which could mean anything from a burnt porch step to an entire cabin destroyed, the Knoxville News Sentinel reported on Sunday.
According to the National Weather Service, the Tennessee Valley and the Southern Appalachian region experienced high winds from the afternoon of Wednesday, March 30, through the afternoon of Thursday, March 31. The combination of the high winds, dry ground (fuels), and low relative humidity produced the dangerous fire weather situation last week, and the the first fire, at Hatcher Mountain and Indigo Lane, was initially reported at about 11 a.m. Wednesday.
The Knoxville News Sentinel reported on Sunday evening that crews from the Tennessee Division of Forestry continued to douse hot spots on Sunday and fight the fires that had sparked near the Great Smoky Mountain National Park in Sevier County. No fatalities have been reported, although two firefighters and a civilian were injured fighting the blazes.
The Hatcher Mountain/Indigo Lane fire is nearly contained, and homeowners are beginning to take stock of the damage, according to the News Sentinel. Another smaller fire sparked near Seymour on Thursday is now about 60 percent contained, the newspaper reported.
The B&R will continue to provide updates and information pertaining to Tennessee Baptist DR in the days ahead. B&R