County Line Fire Update April 12, 2012 8:00pm
Incident: County Line Fire Wildfire
-Management of the County Line Fire was delegated to the Southern Area Type 2 Incident Management Team led by Incident Commander Michael Dueitt on Tuesday, April 10.
-The Osceola National Forest has an extensive prescribed fire program that helps prevent large wildfires. Due to ongoing drought conditions in Florida, the forest has been unable to burn as frequently as needed. This is not only contributing to the severity of the wildfire, but also to the amount of smoke being generated.
-The Forest Service has focused efforts this year on reducing vegetation that can fuel a wildfire not only with prescribed fire but with cutting and chopping of dense, groundcover.
-Strategic burning operations were carried out at night on the County Line Fire to take advantage of favorable weather conditions. Hand crews and equipment were working ahead of the ignition crews to strengthen the fire lines. Day time operations continued to strengthen the fire lines. Burning conditions inside the fire lines were good. Fire activity and heat were primarily on the interior of the fire, allowing firefighters the opportunity to increase confidence levels in containment lines.
Planned Events Continue to reinforce containment lines and be alert to react to spotovers.
Estimate Acreage 34,936
Percent Containment 50 percent
Cause / Date Started The fire started on Thursday, April 5. The cause was lightning.
Personnel and Equipment
410 personnel are on the fire. Equipment includes 29 fire engines, 31 dozers, and 5 helicopters.
Participating Agencies & Cooperators USDA Forest Service, Florida Forest Service, John Bethea State Forest, The Langdale Company, Greater Okefenokee Association of Landowners, The Forestry Company, Columbia County, Baker County, Georgia Forest, Baker Co. Fire Dept., Florida Highway Patrol, Florida Dept. of Transportation, Columbia County Fire Dept
Restrictions and Closures There is a Temporary Flight Restriction in place for a 7-mile radius from the fire's center up to 3,000 ft..
Fire Weather Winds are forecast to continue from the east through this evening, at speeds of 8-12 mph, gusting to 15 mph. Today is expected to be the last critical fire weather day at the County Line Fire for the remainder of this long range weather forecast. Low level moisture from the Atlantic should slowly return to this area.
Smoke Based on smoke modeling at the County Line Fire Incident Command Post, we can expect to see smoke crossing I-75 and I-10 north and west of the interstates junction this afternoon. The community of Live Oak, FL may be affected by smoke from the fire this afternoon and evening. Smoke impacts on I-75 are expected to be most serious from the State line to a few miles north of Valdosta. Smoke can create hazardous driving conditions, particularly in the early morning hours when smoke mixes with fog. Drivers should slow down, turn on low beams and obey any advisories. For more info, visit: http://www.srh.noaa.gov/jax/ n=hourlyforecast