Marsh Fire Lights Up Night Sky Near Alexandria Bay


Investigators are trying to pinpoint the cause of a large fire that lit up the sky near Alexandria Bay Thursday night.

Firefighters from seven departments were called to Goose Bay at approximately 8:30 p.m.

Cattails in the marsh were ablaze and the flames were spreading fast.

"We thought it was going to go right to (Route) 12 if we didn't put it out fast enough," said Andrew Robinson, a local resident who helped put out the fire.

The big worry was that the fire would spread to nearby homes.

"If it got to land it would have taken out several houses, for sure," said witness Kasey Hays.

Officials said they could do little to battle the blaze because it was so far out from land.

Alexandria Bay's fire boat hasn't been put in the water yet, so Clayton was called upon to bring its airboat to the scene.

Officials said they had to wait on the shore for the fire to come to them before they could douse the flames and prevent them from spreading to nearby homes.

Firefighters remained on the scene until they were able to put out the blaze at around midnight.

No homes were damaged.

In the light of day, the destruction was evident - the fire blackened a large area of the marsh.

Now investigators are working to find the cause of the blaze.

Some witnesses have their own ideas.

"Probably a burning barrel, probably someone burning thrash," said Robinson.

While there's speculation as to what caused the fire, officials tell 7 News the burning ban in Jefferson County is working.

"The number of large outdoor fires has significantly decreased, and we're seeing the results of that here in Jefferson County," said Fred Lampman of county Emergency Services.

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Friday, December 9, 2016
, Watertown, NY

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