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LF-R battles woods fire with help from other departments

Posted: July 14, 2015 4:58 p.m.
Updated: July 15, 2015 1:00 a.m.
Provided by the LF-R/

Flames and smoke are seen near a railway track behind Lugoff’s Pepperidge subdivision Saturday.

Crews from Lugoff Fire-Rescue (LF-R) and other Kershaw County fire departments battled a 30-acre woods fire Saturday caused by a passing freight train behind the Pepperidge Subdivision in Lugoff off U.S. 1.

Firefighters stopped the woods fire before it made it to homes inside the subdivision. The S.C. Forestry Commission (SCFC) sent two bulldozer crews. The LF-R also received assistance from several Kershaw County fire departments to contain the fire, a task made difficult from excessive heat, variable winds and tough terrain with limited access. 

Kershaw County EMS provided stand-by care for fire personnel and the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office provided traffic control. A preliminary SCFC investigation indicated the fire was caused by a freight train earlier in the day. Crews were dispatched around 2:15 p.m. Saturday and cleared the scene around 7:30 p.m. LF-R Chief Dennis Ray said smoke from burnt debris would be present for several days inside the fire break area. He also said LF-R crews would return to the scene periodically for several days to check the fire breaks. 

Ray said the area of the blaze is one of the high-risk wildfire areas highlighted in the department’s recent FireWise Wildfire Assessment. He said Lugoff crews were able to quickly identify the most vulnerable nearby homes and deploy resources to those homes first to prevent fire loss. A full copy of the assessment is available at 

“We were very fortunate to be able to quickly deploy our resources to homes previously identified in our recent FireWise Assessment and to have such a great turnout of firefighters for this fire,” Ray said. “I want to thank all of our personnel that did such an outstanding job on this fire in the intense heat of the day to include our Kershaw County Fire Stations and the S.C. Forestry Commission who assisted. Job well done.”


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