Incident Summary | The wildfire started March 30, 2017 around 1601 Hours and is currently burning in Big Cypress National Preserve. It is is located about 30 miles northeast of Ochopee Florida. The cause is unknown.
Location | The fire is located about two miles North of I-75 and West of L-28 Canal Road; about six miles South of Big Cyprus Seminole Road.
UPDATE 8: The fire scorched additional land and has reached 16,944 acres burned. Fire crews have reached a 38% containment status.
There are 261 personnel assigned to this incident along with resources of 7 helicopters, 2 SEAT tankers and 21 engines. Incident cooperators are listed as the following agencies/organizations/groups: National Park Service, Big Cypress National Preserve, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge, Florida Forest Service, Seminole Tribe of Florida, Florida Highway Patrol and Collier County (Florida) Office of Emergency Management.Aviation resources are supporting strategic firing operations with water drops. Resources also are available to monitor hot spots and respond to any new wildfires in the preserve and the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge.
[4/13/2017 – 1800 PDT]
UPDATE 7: The fire has scorched 8,335 acres, growing approximately 7,000 acres overnight. However, fire crews have reached a 13% containment status.
257 personnel are assigned to this incident along with 7 helicopters, 2 SEAT air tankers and 17 engines.
National Park Service, Big Cypress National Preserve, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge, Florida Forest Service, Seminole Tribe of Florida, Florida Highway Patrol and Collier County (Florida) Office of Emergency Management.
Temperatures today will be in the mid-80s and east to northeast winds are forecasted at 5 to 10 mph. An Atlantic sea breeze will develop in the afternoon, increasing wind speeds. A slight chance of showers and storms are expected beginning Wednesday mainly west of the fire area [Source: Inciweb].
[4/10/2017 @ 1745 PDT]
UPDATE 6: Weather forecasters are predicting the smoke from the Cowbell and Parliament Fires could mix with fog throughout Sunday morning, significantly reducing visibility along I-75 (between mile marker 55 and 66) and Hwy. 41 (between Turner River Road and the Oasis Visitor Center, Big Cypress National Preserve
Drivers are being reminded to use extreme caution when driving in these poor visible conditions or find an alternate route to avoid any potential hazardous situations.
[4/9/2017 @ 0800 PDT]
UPDATE 5: The wildfire is being held at 449 acres. Firefighters have reached a 13% containment status.There are 224 personnel assigned, along with IC Steve Parrish, ICT 2 unit.
Additional resources include 8 helicopters and 14 engines.
“Fire behavior became active today with isolated tree torching dropped under a Red Warning. It was also active on the Southern flank. Aircraft resources were used to slow the movement of the fire. We will continue to work on containment lines.” – Fire Managers
[4/7/2017 @ 1900 PDT]
UPDATE 4: The Cowbell Fire is now at 449 acres and fire crews have gained a 10% containment status. There are currently 182 personnel attached to this incident.
Photo Credit: Big Cypress National Preserve / Aerial Recon Flight
[4/6/2017 @ 1955 PDT]
UPDATE 3: The wildfire is still at a 0% containment status and destroyed 449 acres.
146 fire personnel are attached to this incident, along with Incident Cooperators from the National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge, Florida Forest Service, Seminole Tribe of Florida, Florida Highway Patrol, Collier County (Florida) Office of Emergency Management.
Firefighters will continue with structure protection of private properties, while monitoring containment lines and planned lines. They will also address hot spots.
UPDATE 2: The wildfire has now scorched 400 acres with a 0% containment status. The fire behavior is still active and running. There are 16 personnel assigned to this incident. Fire Managers will continue to assess structures and ID containment lines. In the next 12 hours, fire growth is expected. In the next 24 hours, the fire is expected to be reduced by decreased winds. The cause is still unknown. No injuries or damages have been reported.
UPDATE 1: A wildfire broke out on the Preserve yesterday and discovered around 1600 hours. Fire Managers have said this is not due to being caused by a Prescribed fire but from an unknown cause of ignition. About 300 acres have been scorched. This fire is currently not contained.
The fire is currently burning in pine land and cypress habitat and in tall grass and Southern rough fire fuels. Fire behavior is active and running.
Both air and ground resources have been working by conducting the following activities:
- Assessing area trail exposures.
- Checking for structures in the fire perimeter.
- Determining values at risk.
The IC is RT Lumpkin, with a Type 4 IMT with the National Park Service.
- Florida is the second State that has the most wildfires that occur.
- With these wildfires and previous countless others, it has now officially started off the Fire Season earlier than last year.
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