National Forests in Florida
U.S. Forest Service
325 John Knox Road
Tallahassee, FL 32303
Ocala National Forest Fire Update
OCALA, Fla.,June 1, 2019 – Due to ongoing dry, hot weather, the Ocala National Forest is experiencing wildfire activity. Fires in the area are expected to smolder until the area receives significant rainfall. Updates to the fires will be provided as needed until the situation changes.
Island Pond Fire, Marion County FL: This 101-acre fire was caused by lightning on May 29, 2019. It is 100 percent contained. The fire is in the far southwest corner of the forest. Firefighters are working hard to hold the line in the swampy areas. No homes or structures have been damaged or lost.
Billies Bay Fire, Lake County FL: This 2-acre fire was caused by lightning on June 1, 2019. The fire is in the southeast corner of the forest in the Wilderness. The Jackson Hot Shot crew is working with helicopter bucket support and county Water Tenders to get water to the fire. No homes or structures have been damaged or lost.
Air Quality: Smoke from fires has the potential to impair air quality. Sensitive groups should take precautions to avoid exposure to smoke. For information on air quality in your area, visit www.airnow.gov.
Driving Conditions: Motorists are cautioned to drive slowly with lights on while traveling in smoky areas. Drivers should be particularly cautious when it is foggy. Morning fog can mix with smoke and decrease visibility further.
Fire Safety and Prevention: If you visit the Osceola National Forest, please make sure your campfire is completely out. Dispose of wood ash properly. Don’t dump ashes on the ground. Ensure chainsaws, off-highway vehicles and motorcycles have spark arrestors. Never throw cigarettes out of car windows and don’t park or drive your vehicle on dry grass. For more information on wildfire prevention, visit www.smokeybear.com or www.firewise.org.