CAMERON, LA (KPLC) - Cameron Emergency Officials alerted drivers this morning to extreme fog and smoke conditions from Gibbstown south to Creole on Highway 27 where there was also a traffic accident. The air is clear and the visibility is crystal clear now, but for future reference they remind drivers to use extreme caution and to use their headlights in such conditions.
Though the haze has lifted for now, marsh fires that get out of control are a recurring problem this time of year and even jeopardize homes and businesses. Officials are asking for the public's help and cooperation. A fire Sunday night jeopardized homes and businesses in south Cameron. Leann Stewart says it was frightening. "It kept spreading. We were so worried about it catching the houses on fire. And I have my mother that lives with me and she's confined to a wheel chair and my first thought was how am I going to get her out of here."
Stewart said the blaze came dangerously close to homes in her subdivision including hers. "The smoke was so bad it was even coming in our homes. Visibility was zero out here."
After rebuilding twice in the last five years from hurricanes, she doesn't want to suffer the loss of her home from fire. "We've all lost our homes and we're trying to get back settled. And the last thing we need is to lose it to a fire."
The Sunday fire even may have put the closest fire station at risk. Cameron Emergency Operations Director Clifton Hebert says while marsh fires are necessary to burn off unwanted vegetation, it's important for land owners to notify authorities. "This time of year we get a lot of marsh burning. It's that time of year where guys do a lot of agricultural burning and we do like we do every year. We just ask that if they're going to do some sort of agricultural burning that they contact our office so we can coordinate with the National Weather Service and others to get some sort of forecast because this time of year with weather conditions the wind direction can change several different times during a day."
And when marsh fires do cause poor visibility Hebert reminds drivers to use headlights and be extremely careful. Anyone planning an agricultural burn should call Cameron Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness or the Sheriff's Department.
Emergency ops number is 775-7048 and the Sheriff is 775-5111.