(FOX NEWS) — A Tennessee mayor says three people have died in the wildfires that destroyed hundreds of homes and businesses near the Great Smoky Mountains.
Sevier County Mayor Larry Waters says he doesn’t have any details on the deaths. The mayor says authorities are going door-to-door to make sure everyone is safe. About a dozen people have been injured. Gatlinburg’s mayor says they firefighters are still battling hotspots and there will be a curfew in effect tonight.
More than 14,000 residents and tourists were forced to evacuate the tourist city in the mountains.Emergency officials in Tennessee said early Tuesday that at least 100 buildings have been affected by raging wildfires in the Great Smoky Mountain area of the state.
Authorities issued a Level 3 state of emergency and ordered the evacuations of Gatlinburg, Mynatt Park, Park Vista, Ski Mounty and Pigeon Forge on Monday.
The wildfire is also taking aim at the Dollywood DreamMore Resort. WBIR-TV reported that the Dollywood property was entirely evacuated due to the inferno and noted that no structures were damaged.
Terrifying video shows a resident, Michael Luciano, trying to make his way down the mountain. The video shows the flames coming close to the car and the car having to navigate through the thick smoke. “We’ll get out of it, hit the gas,” a voice is heard on video saying. “I can’t see!” someone replies.
“No warning, no nothing,” he said as they try to drive through the flames and over fallen trees. “Please Lord, let us get off this mountain.”
Luciano posted the video on Facebook with the caption: “We almost didn’t make it out alive! But we did.” WATCH BELOW (NOTE: STRONG LANGUAGE):
The Associated Press contributed to this report.