Massive Brush Fires Under Control On Staten Island
Despite being contained, firefighters continue to battle a stubborn brush fire on Staten Island Tuesday. According to officials, it may take another two days before they douse the last flicker of flame. The fire created havoc for motorists and potential health problems for residents who inhaled the smoke:

Over 200 firefighters worked throughout the night Monday into Tuesday to bring under control the five-alarm blaze.

Cars along the West Shore Expressway were swallowed into clouds of smoke created by the fierce fire that raged unchecked for hours through acres of vacant land near what used to be the Fresh Kills landfill.

Some drivers reported seeing flames jump across the highway, which police closed for periods during the day. Visibility was so bad, some motorists couldn't see ten feet in front of them. One elderly woman was so terrified, she thought her car was on fire and ran onto the highway.

Fanned by strong winds up to 40 mph, the fire went to 5 alarms, bringing out 44 units and more than 200 firefighters, including fireboats. The fire was believed to have started in a large area of wood composte. Deputy Chief Roger Sakowich said, "The composte came from the hurricane i September. We had no snow to cover it, so you had deep seated fire with this heavy wind, each pile ignited."

As firefighters battled one stubborn blaze, other units had to deal with a second fire that erupted at Staten Island's Great Kills Park. In the West Shore fire, no homes or businesses were threatened by the flames,

Smoke continued to rise into the night. . Police advised motorists that traffic on the West Shore Expressway could be a slow go again in the morning. There have been no reports of injuries, but health officials are cautioned Staten Island residents to limit their time outdoors and to keep their windows closed until the smoke dissipates.