🔥 Massive smoke cloud appears from Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst

🔥 Smoke spread throughout Burlington and Ocean counties

🔥 It's a controlled burn to prevent wildfires

A towering plume of smoke spread throughout Burlington and Ocean counties Saturday and authorities say it's all under control.

The fire was started on purpose at the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst on Friday evening.

Brush, leaves, and grasses are drying out after a sweltering start to summer with temperatures in the 90s.

The Plumstead fire department posted a photo from Jersey Shore Fire Response showing the rising plume of smoke. They said smoke from the blaze had been passing through town.

According to the joint base, controlled burns are being used to prevent range fires before they can spread and consume hundreds of acres. The burn Friday evening was the first and the base said on Facebook more may be on the way.

"The burn is being closely monitored. You may notice a large cloud of smoke, which is expected and normal. We appreciate your understanding!" the base posted.

New Jersey planned 25,000 acres of controlled burns throughout the state this season to prevent wildfires.

Last year was the busiest wildfire year in recent memory. Controlled burns help to reduce spontaneous wildfires by removing fuel such as debris, leaves, and brush in a way that can be monitored.

Read More: NJ plans 25,000 acres of prescribed burns to prevent wildfires

New Jersey Prescribed burn in 2019 (Department of Environmental Protection)
New Jersey Prescribed burn in 2019 (Department of Environmental Protection)

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