Firefighters battle massive brush fire in seminole ranch conservation area

 
15 March 2017

published by http://www.floridatoday.com


USA Motorists are urged to use caution along roadways in Central and North Brevard on Thursday as a smoke continues to hover in and around the Seminole Ranch Conservation Area. Smoke could be seen as far as Viera and further into Palm Bay. St. Johns River Water Management District officials burned at least 3,000 acres of marsh land to fight back a wildfire that had grown to 700 acres Wednesday afternoon.

The fire is in the Seminole Ranch Conservation Area, which straddles Brevard, Orange, Volusia and Seminole counties. The conservation area reaches into the northwest corner of Brevard.

The wildfire is in marsh land owned by St. Johns and is not affecting any homes, but smoke from the fire forced officials to close State Road 50 near the Brevard-Orange county line.

The initial wildfire near Canaveral Marshes Conservation Area had been extinguished but a second fire at Seminole Ranch Conservation Area broke out and quickly spread to 450 acres, according to St. Johns River Water Management District officials.

District staff were working with the Florida Forest Service to assess the latest fire and decided to carry out a backfire burnoff to contain the smaller blaze. .

To date, rainfall trends for 2017 have been below average with future predictions for similar trends, creating conditions favorable to wildfire.

Additional information will be shared as it becomes available.