Image by David Mark from Pixabay

A marsh fire sent smoke over parts of the city but caused no damage – except to the marsh.

A marsh fire sent dark plumes of smoke over parts of east New Orleans and St. Bernard Parish on Thursday afternoon and evening, but no property damage or injuries were reported. According to the St. Bernard Parish Fire Department, the fire appeared to have burned out on its own by Friday morning. It was likely centered in the Lower 9th Ward near Arabi, possibly near an old dump site. Firefighters from St. Bernard and New Orleans monitored the fire but did not attempt to extinguish it because it was in a difficult-to-reach wetland bordered by water and wasn’t threatening lives or property. “We couldn’t get to it even if we wanted to,” said Charles Licciardi, assistant chief of the St. Bernard Fire Department.

Small and self contained smoke was the major irritant.

Some nearby residents reported eye and throat irritation from the smoke. It’s unclear how the fire started. Marshes burn naturally, sometimes from lightning strikes, but Thursday’s fire was bigger than usual, possibly because humidity was low and winds were high. “All the atmospheric conditions were ripe for it,” Licciardi said.

With all the marshes around us this could be a bad thing if more catch fire.

Marsh fire smoke hits East New Orleans