Anacostia Park Fire Extinguished Tuesday Night

DC FEMS Says Fire Was Highly Visible Due to Location, Darkness

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The fire as seen Tuesday evening from the west side of the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge. Photo: M. Stewart. Used with permission.

DC Fire Emergency medical Services (DC FEMS) extinguished a brush fire that was first reported as blazing in Anacostia Park across from Navy Yard by 9:30 p.m., a representative said.

Firefighters were called to the scene at around 8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 27. Early tweets from DC Fire gave the address as 1900 Aancostia Dr. SE, which would be close to the roller skating pavillion and boat ramp.

However, DC FEMS spokesperson Vito Maggiolo said the fire was actually closer to the intersection of South Capitol SE with the Suitland Parkway, where work continues on the east side of the Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge.

Despite claims repeated on social media that the fire might cover as much as a hundred acres, Maggiolo said the fire burnt no more than 2 acres, stressing that even that was a generous estimate.

The fire may have seemed larger because it happened at night in a highly visible area, right across from the busy riverside residences and restaurants near Nationals Stadium, he noted. “At the end of the day, it was just an isolated brush fire,” he said.

Maggiolo said there was no injury to any person or damage to any structures. He said six fire vehicles and two fire boats responded to the call, using water from the Anacostia River to extinguish the flames and hose down the area.

“There is no way to determine a cause,” said Maggiolo. “But keep in mind it’s been dry for several days and has been windy – [ideal] conditions for brush fires.”

Firefighters had hosed down the area and were packing up by 9:30 p.m. Tuesday night.