The fires signal the danger of somewhat dry conditions as lightning-rich storms keep rolling through. There are no plans to re-institute a burn ban in Flagler for now.
Some 2.7 inches of rain fell in the Bunnell area, flooding streets and swales, but the Espanola fire got much less, if any, and fire officials are saying that the county is not out of the danger zone yet.
The four new lightning-triggered fires declared themselves between 2 and 4 p.m. Saturday afternoon, including one in Favoretta and one across from Shell Bluff, on State Road 100, with more lightning and fires expected today.
The National Weather Service was reporting the heaviest rains of the month–2 to 3 inches–smack in the heart of Flagler’s most severe fire zone, on the Espanola fire. That’s what the fire doctors had been ordering for weeks.
Fire officials reported little but good news on Thursday as fire lines have been holding and chances of rain are increasing through the weekend. Audio of Thursday’s full news conference included.
There’s been three successive days of gains on the Espanola fire and elsewhere, with rain in the weekend forecast. The Division of Forestry is not letting up, however, as it plans to maintain a deployment of more than 200 firefighters in Flagler County.
Espanola fire boundaries and fire lines as of June 22, 2011. Flagler County, Florida. Division of Forestry map.
Complete, updated chart of active Flagler County fires, satellite-view locations, acreage, and updated maps including detailed, latest extent of Espanola and White Eagle fires.
Espanola fire boundaries and fire lines as of June 21, 2011. Flagler County, Florida. Division of Forestry map.
The Blue Ribbon fire near Jasper was not large and had been declared contained, but the firefighters were reportedly overrun by a sudden flare-up as they were extending fire-lines–as DOF firefighters are doing every day on the Espanola fire in Flagler County.