AFC: Ouachita National Forest Fire Was Human Caused; Investigation Underway

Forked Fire

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. (KFSM) — The Forked Fire in Ouachita National Forest —  that started November 21 and has burned approximately 400 acres — was human caused and is under investigation, said Arkansas Forestry Commission Public Affairs Officer Tracy Farley.

The InciWeb, Incident Information System states that the fire has forced a temporary closure of the Flatside Wilderness, and a portion of the Ouachita Trail that goes through the Wilderness.

“We have 40 firefighters on the ground and 20 of them are additional resources brought in from North Carolina,” said Farley.

Progress has been made due to the lack of high winds and crews have a handle on a majority of it.  But the work needs to be done by hand crews because it is in the wilderness, according to Farley.

“It’s a slower progress, but a good progress,” said Farley, “and crews are monitoring the fire lines 24/7.”

Visitors are urged to use extreme caution when utilizing campfires in the area due to the dry conditions.

“The higher temps, below normal relative humidity, and fairly high drought indices are the reasons people need to be extremely cautious when in the area,” said Farley.