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Trash-filled trailer goes up in smoke
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Firefighter Michael "Tank" Gassett douses the remaining ashes where the trailer once stood. - photo by Michelle Kim

An abandoned trailer full of refuse in the tightly-packed Hi Roc area erupted in flames Saturday, sending columns of black smoke into the air.

The calls came in around 2:45 p.m. for a fire at 2636 Twin Oak Drive, near Hi Roc Lake. When firefighters arrived, they found the trailer fully engulfed in flames with fire spreading to nearby trees.

Firefighters were able to get the blaze under control and no one was reportedly injured. No homes were evacuated.

Rockdale County Fire and Rescue Department Fire Inspector Phil Norton said the concern was limiting the exposure of the fire and preventing nearby trailers and homes from being affected by the heat or flames. A propane tank was reportedly located on the other side of a fence next to the property. One deputy on the scene said he could see a thick plume of black smoke while driving in from Ga. Highway 138.

The origin of the fire was not yet known, said Norton.

Neighbors said the owner had died several years ago and the abandoned trailer had become something of a dump site.

The property was reportedly owned by John Caris, who had once owned multiple trailers and trailer properties in the area.

 Caris was listed as the owner of the mobile home at 2636 Twin Oak Drive on 2011 tax bills, along with another mobile on Timberland Drive in care of another person.

In 2010, he was listed as the owner of both the mobile home and real estate at 2636 Twin Oak Drive, mobile home and real estate at 2634 Twin Oak Drive, real estate at 2287 Hi Roc Circle NE, and as the owner of the Timberland Drive mobile home in care of another person.