St. Helena: Wildfire “jumped over firetrucks” & quickly spread along Hwy. 16

ST. HELENA PARISH — Multiple firefighters from several different agencies battled a wildfire in St. Helena Parish that quickly spread several miles.

It started around 3pm on Thursday, Aug. 24 on Anita Dr. in Independence. That’s near the Tangipahoa & St. Helena parish line. From there, due to the high winds and dry condition, the fire spread.

“We had fire trucks sitting in the middle of the road and the fire literally jumped the firetrucks. I wish I could have got that on camera. That’s how strong the winds were,” said St. Helena Parish Fire Chief Kenneth Smith.

From Anita Dr., it spread down to Leonard Chapel Rd. to Hwy. 16.

“No homes were damaged. No one was injuries and no firefighters were injured,” said Chief Smith.

No evacuations had to be issued.

Officials are reminding everyone that a statewide burn ban remains in place.

It took firefighters until 8pm to get the wildfire under control, but firefighters remain on scene currently battling hotspots.

The Louisiana Dept. of Forestry, State Police and several firefighters are on scene. Hwy. 16 was now re-opened since the fire.

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