Gulf County wildfire burns for second day

Update 3:17 p.m.: The fire has now spread into Bay and Calhoun Counties, according to representatived from Gulf County Emergency Management. No homes in Gulf County are threatened at this time.

A wildfire that started Friday is now burning more than 3,000 acres of swampland off of Bertha Road near Highway 22 in Gulf County’s northwest corner.

According to the Florida Forest Service, there are currently 12 tractor-plows working to put the fire out. As of Saturday afternoon, the fire is 10 percent contained.

The fire is currently not believed to be a threat to any structures, said Matt Herring from Gulf County, Florida Emergency Management.

“There’s no residential homes in danger at this time,” he said. “But the Florida Forest Service is doing all they can to try to get it contained.”

Fire danger levels are elevated statewide due to the dry and windy weather conditions. There are currently 143 active wildfires burning more than  5,000 acres across Florida, including the 3,000-acre Bertha Road Fire in Gulf County.

Herring emphasized that it is important for residents to use extreme caution and remain aware of current wildfire activity. 

At 1 p.m. on March 5, Gulf County issued a county-wide burn ban. No fires are allowed in the county until the ban is lifted. Grills may only be used for cooking food. No bonfires or fireworks are permitted at this time.

For updates about the burn ban, visit the Gulf County, Florida Emergency Management Facebook page.

This report will be updated as more information becomes available.


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Meet the Editor

David Adlerstein, The Apalachicola Times’ digital editor, started with the news outlet in January 2002 as a reporter.

Prior to then, David Adlerstein began as a newspaperman with a small Boston weekly, after graduating magna cum laude from Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts. He later edited the weekly Bellville Times, and as business reporter for the daily Marion Star, both not far from his hometown of Columbus, Ohio.

In 1995, he moved to South Florida, and worked as a business reporter and editor of Medical Business newspaper. In Jan. 2002, he began with the Apalachicola Times, first as reporter and later as editor, and in Oct. 2020, also began editing the Port St. Joe Star.

Wendy Weitzel The Star Digital Editor

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