Major wildfire near Route 72 now 80% contained

    The smoke plume for the wildfire in Woodland as seen yesterday afternoon from West Creek. (Photo: JSHN contributor Stacy Lynne Herrick)

    The smoke plume for the wildfire in Woodland as seen yesterday afternoon from West Creek. (Photo: JSHN contributor Stacy Lynne Herrick)

    A major wildfire that broke out in the Pinelands yesterday morning is now reaching significant containment, state officials announced. 

    The forest fire in a remote area near the border of Ocean and Burlington countines south of Route 72 in Woodland Township is 80% contained at 357 acres, according to a release from the New Jersey Forest Fire Service. 

    Crews continue to work on strengthening containment lines, the release said. All traffic detours, including the closure of Route 72 yesterday, have been lifted.

    Officials say the pilot of a state monitoring plane, Delta 10, on a routine flight spotted smoke from the fire on yesterday morning. But it wasn’t immediately clear how the fire started or how long it has been burning.

    Numerous firefighters were battling the fire, and at least one air tanker is dropping water. Officials say gusty winds were hampering their efforts to contain the blaze yesterday, although wind speeds have lessened since then.

    No structures are threatened. No injuries have been reported. 

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    The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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