This story was updated 10:37 a.m. April 25, 2013.
Roughly 150 firefighters battled a large mulch fire in Upper Marlboro for nearly eight hours Wednesday night, and while the pile of mulch is still smoldering, it is now mostly extinguished, fire officials said.
Just before 8 p.m. at a commercial mulch-producing facility in the 2000 block of Ritchie-Marlboro Road, firefighters responded to a report of a 30-by-100-foot pile of burning mulch. Mark Brady, a spokesman for the Prince George’s fire/EMS department, said backup was called immediately.
There were no injuries, according to fire officials, and no structures or homes were damaged.
The fire’s rural location proved to be challenging, Brady said, since there were no fire hydrants within a two-mile radius. Water tankers from Charles County and Anne Arundel County were brought to the scene in addition to Prince George’s tankers that had arrived as a water source.
“A water shuttle was established using 9 tankers shuttling thousands of gallons of water between the burning pile and the closest hydrant about two miles away,” Brady said.
The majority of the fire was extinguished by roughly 4 a.m., about eight hours after the initial report.
As of Thursday morning, five firefighter units — a piece of firefighting apparatus and the people needed to operate it — remained at the scene to wet down the now-dispersed pile of mulch and Brady said incident commanders believe the area will continue to smolder for the next several days.
The cause of the blaze is still being investigated, Brady said, but said the mulch material and high winds contributed to its rapid spreading.
Wind gusts were up to 20 to 30 miles per hour, he said.