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Thread: Seacrest Forest Fire


  1. #1

    Seacrest Forest Fire

    I'm in Inlet Beach and see what looks like a big cloud of smoke to the north and east. Are there any forest fires nearby, especially around Bay County?

  2. #2
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    Looks like there is one in the area reported to Florida Forest Service:

    http://www.floridaforestservice.com/...formation.html

  3. #3

    Forest fire north of 30 A?

    Did I hear something on WMBB 10:00 news about a forest fire this afternoon in the Secrest area Northside of 30A??
    Last edited by 30AGuy; 04-29-2012 at 10:29 PM. Reason: Misspelling

  4. #4
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    From South Walton Fire District:
    Firefighters from the Florida Forest Service and the South Walton Fire District worked to save 10 homes from being destroyed by a wildfire this afternoon.

    The “Seacrest” wildfire started around 3:30 this afternoon in a wooded area behind several homes north of 30-A south of Highway 98 in the Seacrest community between Rosemary Beach and Alys Beach.
    Three Florida Forest Service wildland firefighting tractor-plow units and 8 South Walton Fire District units all worked together to stop the fire at just 6 acres but not before it came dangerously close to destroying ten homes all estimated at approximately $350,000 each. One of the homes did receive minor damage to some of its skirting and an electric/utility line connected to the structure. This was an excellent example of an outstanding ‘partnership’ between the Florida Forest Service wildland firefighters and an area’s structure firefighting agency—in this case, the South Walton Fire District. The cause of the wildfire is uncertain and is still under investigation.
    Last edited by miznotebook; 04-29-2012 at 11:35 PM.

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  6. #6
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    So glad to hear the outcome - it could have been so much worse!! Hats off to the hero's of this story!

  7. #7
    Posted yesterday on Seacrest Beach II's website:
    At about 4pm this afternoon, the owner of the "Crabby Steve's" restaurant across the street from Seacrest Beach in Highpoint (Steve Carpenter), saved one of our Seacrest homes from going up in flames.

    A half hour earlier, a fire had started in the greenway/wetlands near the water tower where workers were installing some new AT&T communications equipment on top. Steve noticed the smoke, and as a former fireman, came over to see what was happening. With the wind blowing towards the Northeast, most of the houses along Endless Summer Way managed to avoid damage despite flames that were sometimes 30 to 40 feet high.

    As the fire progressed toward the east, some flaming debris blown by the wind started a fire that began to build under the HVAC unit and irrigation well on the right side of the last house on the street. With no fireman nearby, Steve grabbed a pressurized hose from a firetruck more than a hundred feet away. Discovering the hose was about ten feet too short to reach the fire directly, he put out what he could and then aimed the hose up in the air so that it would run down off the roof to extinguish the fire. He was just in time. The flames had just begun to go under the house, so that there is little doubt that without Steve's quick action, the home would have been engulfed in flames within minutes. About ten minutes later, fireman on the walking path extinquished a wall of flames that approached within two feet of the rear of the home. The paint on the building skirting and stair supports blistered from the heat. Just 15 minutes earlier, Steve had banged on the front door of the home and told the renting families with several young children that they needed to get out immediately, and they did. They now cannot return because the HVAC and electric box have been damaged.

    More than a dozen pieces of equipment from the South Walton Fire Department, Police Department, and State Forestry Division fought the fire from the Water Tower area, all along Endless Summer Way, and in Treetop where the fire came close but did not damage one house that was threatened. In summary, the one house on Endless Summer Way sustained the damage described above; one vacant lot and some of the walking path were torn up a bit by the three huge Forestry bulldozers going in to create a firebreak; and, a few sections of the sidewalk in front of the lot were damaged by the bulldozers.

    Overall, we were very lucky. No one was hurt and only relatively minor damage was sustained. Steve, a big thanks from our community for your actions this afternoon!

  8. #8
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    Firefighters Rock!

  9. #9
    Way to go Steve!!!

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by 30AGuy View Post
    Way to go Steve!!!
    A great guy that can cook some amazing food AND save lives....Our HERO:)

  11. #11
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    THANK YOU to our firefighters, Steve, and everone else who offcially stepped in to save lives and property!
    Paula

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    From the NWF Daily News:

    It has been determined that the fire was caused by a lit cigarette thrown into an area with tall grass and pine straw, which was dry enough to support the ignition.


    Read more: http://www.nwfdailynews.com/articles...#ixzz1td2wjoix

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by lenzoe View Post
    From the NWF Daily News:

    It has been determined that the fire was caused by a lit cigarette thrown into an area with tall grass and pine straw, which was dry enough to support the ignition.


    Read more: http://www.nwfdailynews.com/articles...#ixzz1td2wjoix



    It's my understanding that was the cause of the fire in the development behind the Tom Thumb and Cafe 30-A about five years ago. That one did destroy a few houses and almost got the Rolling Tides condo complex. They actually had to send the chemical dumping plane over a few times before they got it under control.

    One cigarette.

  14. #14
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    If a cop is in the right place to see it happen, throwing a lit cigarette from a vehicle is a criminal misdemeanor precisely because of forest fire concerns.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by beachmouse View Post
    If a cop is in the right place to see it happen, throwing a lit cigarette from a vehicle is a criminal misdemeanor precisely because of forest fire concerns.
    I don't know about the fire in Seacrest, but the one behind Tom Thumb was supposedly tossed by a housecleaner who had stepped out back to smoke, then dropped the butt into the landscaping pinestraw. All the other properties surrounding also had decorative pinestraw or bark in the flower beds. That was what allowed the fire to spread so widely and quickly. It was a windy day and burning clumps of pinestraw were actually being blown through the air.

  16. #16
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    The thing I really dislike about Watercolor is how they use the pine straw pretty much everywhere for landscaping purposes. Yeah, it looks really nice, but more years than not, we get drought conditions in May and June and the pine straw just seems like it's kindling for something worse.

  17. #17
    thanks to Steve and the "official" firefighters-we're really glad that they were able to limit the damage- we'll be enjoying those wonderful salads outdoors come memorial week.

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