SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - Seminole County Fire responded to several brush fires Saturday and has a special unit prepared to respond to more if needed.
The Seminole County burn ban will remain in place as Central Florida continues to see a high risk for brush fires. A specialized unit with the Seminole County Fire Department, the Wild Land Burn Team, is prepared to fight brush fires this weekend.
Seminole County Fire says one of the brush fires they responded to was likely caused by a cigarette, which is why fire officials are asking people to be careful in these dry conditions and the burn ban seriously.
"All it takes is that spark to actually cause things to grow. As we go through the day things get dryer, the winds pick up and that can unfortunately be a bad thing," said Kevin Beavers with Seminole County's Wild Land Burn Team. "Folks need to take it seriously. The dry conditions are not something to brush aside. They could have the effect of having devastating wildfires."
Seminole County uses specialized trucks to handle these fires called Woods Trucks, also known as Brush Trucks. The trucks have specialized tools and equipment to help firefighters create fire line breaks to stop fires from progressing. The trucks also have water tankers that can hold thousands of gallons of water and are stationed throughout the county.
Fire officials say there are measures that residents can take to protect their homes and property including, removing any dead or dying vegetation around the home, don't keep firewood stacked near the home, and keeping a buffer zone of 30 feet from the house by keeping flammable materials such as brush piles away.