The wildfire in Horry County has been contained but will not be labelled as “controlled” until officials are convinced that it can no longer flare up due to heat produced anywhere inside the contained perimeter. The South Carolina Forestry Commission continues to investigate possible causes for the fire and currently has charged one individual.
“Although we continue to investigate, no evidence has turned up to indicate a second possible point of origin,” said Scott Hawkins, an agency spokesperson.
Mark Torchi of Conway burned garbage on his property on April 18. The fire escaped his area but was eventually extinguished by fire fighters. Officials believe that low humidity and strong winds on Wednesday, April 22, allowed the fire to flare up and spread rapidly.
Torchi was ticketed twice by the SCFC with fines totaling over $700. Both of the citations deal with the initial fire on his land. The first is Failure to Notify the Forestry Commission, SC Code 48-35-10, and the other is Allowing Fire to Spread to Lands of Another, SC Code 16-11-180.
Though Torchi’s has only been held responsible for the fire on his land that spread to a neighbor’s property, investigators remain convinced it led to the wildfire that devistated the county.