Gulf Shores wildfire

GULF SHORES, Ala. (WALA) -- A wildfire burning in Gulf Shores just west of Gulf State Park is now 100% contained. 

Emergency crews are along Highway 59 near Waterville USA trying to get the fire under control. Highway 135, which runs through Gulf State Park, is currently closed to drivers.

According to J. Gary Ellis of Gulf State Park, the fire is contained in an area between Highway 59 and Highway 135. So far, it has burned about 50 acres of mainly sawgrass and black needle rush.

This fire is not a prescribed burn. Ellis said the park conducts regular controlled burns in conjunction with the Alabama Forestry Commission. The last one was in November. The timing and frequency of such burns varies depending on wind, how dry conditions are and other factors.  

Officials are not yet sure how the fire started but a downed power line may be to blame. Mark Ingram, an official with Baldwin EMC, said a secondary line is on the ground near Waterville and power crews are headed to the area. Ingram said the line is de-energized and not serving any direct members.

Along with the Gulf Shores Fire Department, the Orange Beach Fire Department is also on scene working to extinguish the fire.

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