Teen charged with starting NC wildfire last year

A 17-year-old is facing misdemeanor charges in connection to the Party Rock Fire that burned for several weeks in western North Carolina last year, WLOS reports.

The teen is charged with "negligently setting or causing to be set on fire of any woods, lands or field in any county under the protection of the Department of Environmental and Natural Resources," according to the Town of Lake Lure.

The Party Rock Fire burned 7000 acres in the areas of Lake Lure, Chimney Rock Village, and Bat Cave, and caused mandatory evacuations of area residents in November 2016. 

That area consists of 2489 acres of North Carolina State Park property and 4653 acres on private property.

Firefighting costs are estimated at $7 million. 

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