Florida Is On Fire – Literally

Brush Fires Are Taking Over Parts Of Florida

In case you haven’t heard, Florida is on fire again. A little over a week after Governor Rick Scott declared a state of emergency for wildfire risk, the state is being consumer by more fires.

On Friday a new brush fire broke out in Polk County. Polk County Fire Rescue and the Florida Forest Service worked together to put out a small brush fire in North Lakeland.

The fire was supposedly sparked by a lawn mower and was estimated to be two to three acres, a Polk County Fire Rescue spokesperson told The Ledger. The fire broke out near 10950 Sportsman Trail and grew because of the area had lots of “heavy fire fuel.”

The fire was reported at 12:25 p.m. Friday and crews arrived by 12:37 p.m. By Friday evening the fire had been contained.

In another part of the county evacuations are still in place for residents of Indian Lake Estates after another brush fire broke out Friday.

According to WFLA, county officials said the fire has already burned 600 acres, but they could not say how much of the fire was yet contained.

The fire was reported to be calm overnight, but crews are worried about the rising heat around 10 a.m. on Saturday. It has not been decided whether or not the evacuation order will be lifted today or not.

Residents in the area are being helped by the Red Cross, who has opened a shelter at the First Presbyterian Church of Lake Wales, 305 Est Central Avenue in Lake Wales.

This fire is being considered suspicious and officials are offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest. Call 1-800-342-5869 to report information.

Photo: http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/

Over in Collier County a wildfire at Golden Gate has burned almost 5,000 acres and is still growing.

More than 7,000 homes are under a mandatory evacuation due to the fire. So far the Florida Forestry Service says at least nine homes have been damaged from the flames.

Crews from Sarasota County were sent to help get the area under control, but at last check WFLA reported the fire was only 10 percent contained. One man has been injured and was taken to Tampa General Hospital’s burn unit with second-degree burns on about 20 percent of his body.