It’s been two weeks since Thanksgiving, and yet residents of one North Carolina town are still smelling burned sweet potatoes in the air. Was it an extremely serious baking mishap? Not exactly — but heat is definitely involved.
A silo full of dehydrated sweet potatoes has been smoldering in Farmville, N.C. since at least Nov. 27, when the fire was first noticed, the town’s manager told the Associated Press.
As a result, citizens have been complaining about the smoke (though the smell might be pretty nice, one might imagine), while firefighters and other town workers have been at the scene around the clock trying to put the fire out for good.
Thus far at least 25 million gallons of water have been directed at the silo, but there’s no still word on when the fire is expected to finally be tamed.
Officials say there’s no health threat to the town of almost 5,000 people, and that the company that owns the silo is expected to pay firefighting costs.
No one knows exactly when the fire started, but it could’ve been sparked when the company tried drilling holes to dislodge a hardened mass of sweet potatoes that got wet over the summer, then dried and solidified.
“It’s been described as harder than concrete,” the town manager said. Firefighters have switched from using a machine to continuously douse the silo to periodic bursts of 10,000 gallons of water into the top of the silo.
“What they’re trying to do is allow the silo to burn itself out,” he said.
Long Past Thanksgiving, Burnt Sweet Potatoes Vex Small Town [Associated Press]