VIDEO: Flames surround driver trying to escape Tennessee Wildfir - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

VIDEO: Flames surround driver trying to escape Tennessee Wildfire; Hundreds of structures burned

Posted: Updated:

ATLANTA (AP) — The Latest on wildfires burning across the South (all times local):

9:15 a.m.

Tennessee officials say thousands of residents and visitors in the Gatlinburg area have been evacuated and hundreds of structures have been damaged and destroyed by spreading wildfires.

In a news release Tuesday morning, authorities say three people who suffered severe burns have been transferred from a Knoxville hospital to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, which has a burn unit. A fourth person is being treated for facial burns in Knoxville.

The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency says hundreds of firefighters as well as local and state personnel and National Guard troops have been sent in to help fight the blaze and check on people.

Officials say about 14,000 residents and visitors were evacuated from Gatlinburg alone.

According to the news release, preliminary surveys indicate that Westgate Resorts with more than 100 buildings and Ober Gatlinburg are both likely destroyed.

___

8:35 a.m.

The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency says officials in the Gatlinburg area estimate that about 100 homes have been damaged or destroyed by flames from spreading wildfires.

Emergency officials in Tennessee ordered evacuations in downtown Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge and in other areas of Sevier County near the Smoky Mountains while crews continue to battle the blaze. Officials say the wildfire has set 30 structures ablaze in Gatlinburg, including a 16-story hotel. TEMA says no deaths have been reported, though one person was burned while evacuating.

Officials say there are about 1,200 people sheltering at the Gatlinburg Community Center and the Rocky Top Sports Park. Several other shelters have opened to house those forced from their homes.

___

8:05 a.m.

The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency says National Guard troops are being sent in to help out as wildfires continue to spread in Gatlinburg and surrounding areas in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

TEMA spokesman Dean Flener says the troops will transport first responders, perform welfare checks and remove debris.

Emergency officials in Tennessee ordered evacuations due to the blaze in downtown Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge and in other areas of Sevier County. Officials say the wildfire has set 30 structures ablaze in Gatlinburg, including a 16-story hotel. TEMA says no deaths have been reported, though one person was burned while evacuating.

Officials say there are about 1,200 people sheltering at the Gatlinburg Community Center and the Rocky Top Sports Park.

Meanwhile, officials say about 12,000 people are without power and three school systems had canceled classes Tuesday.

___

4 a.m.

As storms approach some of the largest wildfires burning in the South, the rain signaled new hope for firefighters working to put them out.

But authorities said the storms were also bringing high winds, which could topple the many dead trees and branches in burning forests and pose a threat to firefighters. And experts predicted rains from one storm system wouldn't be enough to end the relentless drought that's spread across several states.

The storms appeared to be taking aim at the two largest wildfires in the South — the nearly 28,000-acre Rough Ridge Fire in north Georgia and the nearly 25,000-acre Rock Mountain Fire burning on both sides of the Georgia-North Carolina line.

Authorities said 22 other large wildfires were burning throughout the Southeast U.S.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Family tries euthanizing cat after he walked 12 miles to return home

    Family tries euthanizing cat after he walked 12 miles to return home

    Thursday, April 19 2018 1:23 AM EDT2018-04-19 05:23:12 GMT
    @a.cat.named.toby@a.cat.named.toby
    @a.cat.named.toby@a.cat.named.toby

    RALEIGH, North Carolina - A North Carolina family gave their cat away and then tried to euthanize him after he walked 12 miles back to his home. According to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Wake County, North Carolina, Toby the cat made the long trek back to his family after they tried to give him away. When he returned, they took him to a shelter to put him down. The shelter called the SPCA to ask if they would help 

    >>

    RALEIGH, North Carolina - A North Carolina family gave their cat away and then tried to euthanize him after he walked 12 miles back to his home. According to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Wake County, North Carolina, Toby the cat made the long trek back to his family after they tried to give him away. When he returned, they took him to a shelter to put him down. The shelter called the SPCA to ask if they would help 

    >>
  • Toddler shoots pregnant mom outside Indiana thrift store

    Toddler shoots pregnant mom outside Indiana thrift store

    Wednesday, April 18 2018 4:40 PM EDT2018-04-18 20:40:25 GMT

    MERRILVILLE, Indiana - An Indiana woman is in critical but stable condition after her 3-year-old daughter accidentally shot her with a gun her father left in the car. Police in Merrillville say two small children were waiting in the car with their mother while their father shopped inside a thrift store when the shooting happened Tuesday afternoon.

    >>

    MERRILVILLE, Indiana - An Indiana woman is in critical but stable condition after her 3-year-old daughter accidentally shot her with a gun her father left in the car. Police in Merrillville say two small children were waiting in the car with their mother while their father shopped inside a thrift store when the shooting happened Tuesday afternoon.

    >>
  • Michigan mother leaves 2 infant girls in suitcase on curb

    Michigan mother leaves 2 infant girls in suitcase on curb

    Thursday, April 19 2018 11:16 AM EDT2018-04-19 15:16:15 GMT

    FLINT, Mich. - Police say a 26-year-old Michigan woman left her two infant daughters inside a suitcase on the side of the road as child welfare workers arrived to take the children away. Police say officers assisting Child Protective Services workers Wednesday were unable to find the children inside the Flint home, about 50 miles northwest of Detroit.

    >>

    FLINT, Mich. - Police say a 26-year-old Michigan woman left her two infant daughters inside a suitcase on the side of the road as child welfare workers arrived to take the children away. Police say officers assisting Child Protective Services workers Wednesday were unable to find the children inside the Flint home, about 50 miles northwest of Detroit.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Prince's doctor fined for illegal prescription

    Prince's doctor fined for illegal prescription

    Thursday, April 19 2018 1:21 PM EDT2018-04-19 17:21:42 GMT

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - A Minnesota doctor accused of illegally prescribing an opioid for Prince a week before the musician died has agreed to pay $30,000 to settle a federal civil claim. The settlement comes as state prosecutors are planning to announce whether anyone will be charged in the two-year investigation into Prince's death. Prince died on April 21, 2016, from an accidental overdose of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid. No one has been criminally charged.

    >>

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - A Minnesota doctor accused of illegally prescribing an opioid for Prince a week before the musician died has agreed to pay $30,000 to settle a federal civil claim. The settlement comes as state prosecutors are planning to announce whether anyone will be charged in the two-year investigation into Prince's death. Prince died on April 21, 2016, from an accidental overdose of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid. No one has been criminally charged.

    >>
  • Michigan mother leaves 2 infant girls in suitcase on curb

    Michigan mother leaves 2 infant girls in suitcase on curb

    Thursday, April 19 2018 11:16 AM EDT2018-04-19 15:16:15 GMT

    FLINT, Mich. - Police say a 26-year-old Michigan woman left her two infant daughters inside a suitcase on the side of the road as child welfare workers arrived to take the children away. Police say officers assisting Child Protective Services workers Wednesday were unable to find the children inside the Flint home, about 50 miles northwest of Detroit.

    >>

    FLINT, Mich. - Police say a 26-year-old Michigan woman left her two infant daughters inside a suitcase on the side of the road as child welfare workers arrived to take the children away. Police say officers assisting Child Protective Services workers Wednesday were unable to find the children inside the Flint home, about 50 miles northwest of Detroit.

    >>
  • 'Seinfeld' actor shows up at Devils game with face painted

    'Seinfeld' actor shows up at Devils game with face painted

    Thursday, April 19 2018 10:56 AM EDT2018-04-19 14:56:39 GMT

    NEWARK, N.J. - Life imitated art at the Stanley Cup playoffs as the actor who played Puddy on the TV sitcom "Seinfeld" showed up at the game with his face painted as a New Jersey Devils fan. Patrick Warburton is a Devils fan and in a 1995 episode of the hit show he appeared with his face painted in red and green. 

    >>

    NEWARK, N.J. - Life imitated art at the Stanley Cup playoffs as the actor who played Puddy on the TV sitcom "Seinfeld" showed up at the game with his face painted as a New Jersey Devils fan. Patrick Warburton is a Devils fan and in a 1995 episode of the hit show he appeared with his face painted in red and green. 

    >>