After three Weeks, Croatan Wildfire Now Fully Controlled

NEW BERN - Authorities say a wildfire in a national forest in eastern North Carolina is fully controlled after three weeks.

The U.S. Forest Service said the blaze in the Croatan National Forest was 100 percent controlled Saturday after burning more than 21,000 acres near New Bern.

The fire started as a controlled burn three weeks ago. Tens of millions of gallons of water were pumped into canals to put out fires in the organic soil as well as the forest.

The Forest Service also used agricultural water sprayers to keep the fire down once it was out. Officials were afraid the fire could spark back up again in the extreme heat if the brush wasn't kept wet.

The Forest Service says the area that was burned will remain closed, but other areas in the national forest have been reopened.

Over 100 firefighters were called out to battle the blaze.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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