TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida Forest Service is deploying a Task Force from the Florida Panhandle and Big Bend regions to South Florida to assist with wildfire suppression efforts. Resources include 16 personnel, 2 tractor-plows, 2 heavy dozers, and 2 brush trucks. Currently, there are 46 fires burning 4,072 acres across Florida. Of those, 29 are south of the I-4 corridor and are burning 4,017 acres.
The Tree Frog Fire is currently 800 acres in Indian River County, just south of the Brevard County line. Florida Forest Service crews are working to contain the fire. I-95 is closed northbound at mile marker 156 and southbound from mile markers 166 to 173. Drivers should be cautious and avoid the area. There are no structures threatened at this time. The cause of the Tree Frog Fire is under investigation, but officials suspect a campfire started the fire.
“It’s more important than ever for residents to be cautious and understand their role in preventing and preparing for a wildfire,” said Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried. “All residents and travelers in the vicinity of the Tree Frog Fire should closely monitor the media for updates on the wildfire and road conditions. Together, we can help ensure the safety of our families, communities, and firefighters.”
“With little to no rain in the extended forecast and temperatures rising, the additional resources are critical as we respond these active wildfires,” said Erin Albury, State Forester and Director of the Florida Forest Service.
The Florida Forest Service is urging the public to be cautious with all fire and help reduce the chances of a catastrophic wildfire. You can be ready for wildfire by learning how to:
- Prepare Your Yard – create defensible space that will slow down or stop the spread of a wildfire.
- Prepare Your Home – harden your home and outbuildings to reduce the impact of a wildfire and its spread.
- Prepare an Emergency Supply Kit – pack essentials and follow your local emergency management officials to know when and how to evacuate.
- Avoid Burning During Periods of High Fire Danger – know Florida’s outdoor burning laws and learn to burn safely and responsibly.
- Report a Fire or Suspicious Smoke – call 911 or your local Florida Forest Service dispatch office.
To view current wildfire conditions and activity, visit FDACS.gov/CurrentWildfires.
The Florida Forest Service, a division of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, manages more than 1 million acres of state forests and provides forest management assistance on more than 17 million acres of private and community forests. The Florida Forest Service is also responsible for protecting homes, forestland and natural resources from the devastating effects of wildfire on more than 26 million acres.
–Florida Forest Service