June 10, 2014

Pump house burns on Pea
Island National Wildlife Refuge

At approximately 7 p.m. on Monday, Dare Central dispatched the Chicamacomico Volunteer Fire Department to a fire on the west side of the North Pond dike on Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge.  

In addition, employees from the National Park Service, North Carolina Forest Service, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service responded to the fire.    

According to National Park Service Ranger Corey Smith, three fire engines and a total of 12 personnel responded to the incident, which was the pump house for the North Pond Pumping Station.

Deputy Refuge Manager Scott Lanier commented, "The pump at this location was destroyed during Hurricane Irene.  It had recently been  replaced by Ducks Unlimited under contract with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at a cost of over $400,000.  Since installation, we have been having problems with the pump's operation.  It's disappointing to lose pumping capabilities in this pond again. Migratory birds like shorebirds and waterfowl will continue to suffer without water management capabilities at Pea Island."

Lanier added, "The Pea Island Crabbing Rodeo, scheduled for Saturday, will still occur.  We won't be able to run the pump, but it sounds like there are plenty of crabs in North Pond for the taking."

For more information, contact the Refuge Headquarters at 252-473-1131.



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