Maine Forest Service battles blueberry field fire Down East

Posted May 20, 2012, at 5:28 a.m.
Last modified May 20, 2012, at 4:18 p.m.

TOWNSHIP 19 MD — The Maine Forest Service fought a fire north of Columbia Falls on Saturday afternoon after a blueberry field burn went out of control, according to a release.

Forest rangers were called to the fire off Shadagee Road around 1 p.m. Saturday and went to the scene with two fire engines from the Jonesboro headquarters, according to Ranger Jasmine Hammond. The fire ended up burning 10 acres.

Hammond said Cecil Gray, a blueberry grower from Columbia, lost control of the blueberry field burn after equipment failed on one of the tractors being used on the prescribed fire and the fire jumped the control lines. She said that Gray had a permit to burn the fields.

The fire was contained in about two hours and there were no injuries to any firefighters.

The ranger said no charges will be filed in the incident because the blueberry company had a permit for the controlled burn and met all of the listed criteria.

There were eight wildfires reported across Maine on Saturday, according to Ranger Lt. Jeff Currier, as temperatures reached into the 70s. in many areas.