RFD douses brush fire near Calverton development

04/30/2013 7:19 PM |
PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | A Riverhead Fire Department brush truck heads into the woods near a Calverton development Tuesday afternoon.

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | A Riverhead Fire Department brush truck heads into the woods near a Calverton development Tuesday afternoon.

Riverhead firefighters doused a brush fire the length of a football field in a section of woods near a Calverton development Tuesday evening, preventing the fire from spreading, fire officials said.

Fire officials were called to the Calverton Hills development at 5:09 p.m. to investigate reports of people smelling smoke near the basketball courts off Wooded Way, said first assistant chief Joseph Raynor. Fire chiefs soon located the fire across the street in a hilly section of woods behind a series of apartment buildings, he said.

The fire, which was roughly 100 yards across, was put out by firefighters using pumpers and brush trucks, Mr. Raynor said. Firefighters used the brush trucks — vehicles specifically designed to knock down trees — to clear a path to the fire.

The volunteers also had to contend with onlookers, some of whom were children who ran close to the fire trucks or rode their bikes around them as the firefighters tried to enter the woods.

By 6 p.m., the fire was extinguished and fire crews were spraying the ground with water to “mop up” any smoldering remains of the fire.

psquire@timesreview.com