Dolly Parton joins fight against forest fires

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Country music star Dolly Parton has joined the fight against forest fires that have been raging in East Tennessee and most of the Southeast for weeks.

In a video sent to the media by the National Park Service on Sunday morning, Parton asks her fans to help protect the Great Smoky Mountains and other public lands around the Southeast by observing burn bans and reporting fires when they see them.

The state Division of Forestry, on its website burnsafetn.org, stated that 65 forest fires were still active in Tennessee burning 15,510 acres. Almost all of the fires were listed as 100% contained. One, however, the 100-acre Ivydale/Trail #2 fire in Campbell, was only 30% contained.

Firefighters said they hope up to 2 inches of rain expected late Monday and Tuesday will help extinguish the fires, many of which they suspect were set by arsonists. The National Weather Service in Morristown predicted the rain should fall from late Monday through Wednesday.

Airnow.gov, the Environmental Protection Agency's website, shows the Air Quality Index in the Knoxville area as "moderate."

Follow Steve Ahillen on Twitter: @sahillen


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