Wind-driven wildfires spread across mid-Atlantic region

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Mid-Atlantic region has been struggling with dozens of wildfires spawned by strong winds and extremely dry conditions.

The fires have snarled traffic, kept firefighters on the run and even toppled the National Christmas tree. On Saturday, Maryland State Police shut down Interstate 95 in both directions in the Laurel area after a wildfire at a mulch plant spread into the median of the highway. There are no reports of deaths or serious injuries.

In Virginia's Prince William County, half a dozen fires scorched about 300 acres and led officials to evacuate 60 people from homes. Crews used so much water that water pressure fell to dangerous levels, leading officials to issue a boil-water advisory.

The region was under a high-wind warning for much of the day. The National Weather Service says sustained winds were measured at 25 to 30 mph, with gusts recorded at up to 55 mph.

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