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Volcano-like underground fire is put out after a month

WOODBURY, N.J. (AP) – Crews have put out a fire that burned underground in southern New Jersey for a month, melting the ground around it and reaching 1,000 degrees.

Woodbury Mayor Bill Volk tells the Courier-Post  that the fire was extinguished Thursday, a month after it started during a severe storm. He says it “looked like a volcano.”

It began when a power line snapped, sending electricity into the ground and igniting a mixture of coal and cinder used as the foundation for train tracks in a wooded area.

The mayor says neighbors called authorities when they saw smoke coming from the ground.

Firefighters went to the scene seven times over a month before county and state officials helped put it out.