CRESWELL– Smoke from a wildfire burning in rural Tyrrell County is reducing visibility on roads across inland eastern North Carolina, and the N.C. Department of Transportation is warning motorists to take precautions when driving in the region.
Motorists throughout the region should be aware of the possibility of suddenly reduced visibility. Drivers have reported heavy pockets of smoke in Tyrrell, Hertford and Gates counties, and moderate smoke in Currituck and Camden counties.
When encountering heavy smoke or fog, drivers should:
- Slow down and allow extra time to reach your destination.
- Use low-beam headlights and fog lights. Never use high-beam lights, as they cause glare and can make it difficult to see in front of you.
- Leave extra distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.
- Follow the lane markers with your eyes to ensure you are staying in the proper lane,
- Turn on hazard lights and find a safe place to pull off the road if visibility is reduced to zero.
Risks of heavy smoke are higher at night, when darkness combines with cooler air to hold smoke closer to the ground.
According to the N.C. Forest Service
, the ‘Last Resort’ fire covers 5,200 acres of Tyrrell County and is currently 34% contained.