The 700 acre Goethe State Forest fire in Levy county continues to burn, sending smoke and ash over Gainesville.
Several crews with heavy equipment have been trying since last week to contain it, but so far no success and the fire is NOT considered under control. And now there is a second big fire to the east of Alachua county, with more than 600 acres burning in southern Putnam county. Fire mitigation specialist Ludie Bond says 30 much smaller fires in the area have cropped up since Thursday, when a storm front with frequent lightening moved through the area. She says the last several days have been fairly pleasant weather wise, but those nice breezes and dry conditions have helped fan the flames.
She says the Goethe fire is in an area with a lot of fuel, and teams have been trying to cut fire lines to contain the blaze. Although no homes or other buildings are being threatened, the fire is creating lots of smoke, and that’s making driving conditions hazardous on some roads, like U-S 19 or highway 121. Bond says this is wildfire season in Florida—just like we have hurricane season. And she says it’s not something that should be unexpected.