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State fire marshal closes 147 acres at McClintic WMA in Mason County

Jul. 01, 2010 @ 03:34 PM

    POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. – Acting upon an ORDER OF CLOSURE issued by the West Virginia State Fire Marshal, the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR) has closed the property know as the “McClintic Wildlife Management Area – Active Storage Area South of Potter Creek Road,” in Mason County, W.Va.  The West Virginia State Fire Marshal has ordered this area closed to public access because it constitutes a danger to life or property from the hazards of fire or explosion. This Order shall remain in effect until further notice.

“Approximately 175 acres of the McClintic WMA will be affected by this closure,” said Curtis Taylor, Chief of the DNR’s Wildlife Resources Section.  “The remainder of the 3,655-acre wildlife management area will continue to be open for public use.”

The closed area includes that portion of McClintic WMA South of Potter Creek Road where the active storage bunkers are located. These bunkers were originally built by the U.S. Army to store munitions during World War II. In 1949, these lands were deeded to the State of West Virginia by the U.S. Army for the purpose of fish and wildlife conservation. The DNR now leases several of these bunkers for storage purposes to private individuals and companies.

One of these leased bunkers on McClintic WMA exploded early in the morning on May 17, 2010. Fortunately, no injuries were reported as a result of this explosion.  The incident is still under investigation by the West Virginia State Fire Marshal and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

According to the West Virginia State Fire Marshal, the ORDER OF CLOSURE will remain in effect until the Fire Marshal or other ourt or ruling body enters a future Order on this matter.  For additional information, please contact the DNR’s McClintic District Office (304-675-0871) or the West Virginia State Fire Marshal’s office (304-558-2191).