TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Tampa officials responded to a large brush fire in the 4800 block of West Fair Oaks on Friday.
Police said the property, which was formerly the site of Georgetown Apartments, is now vacant and no nearby structures were threatened.
Favorable winds helped the burn move toward the water and prevent damage to structures.
It’s estimated 50 acres burned in the fire. The fire is now under control.
“The closest working fire hydrant we had was probably about a quarter of a mile away, so one of the challenges we had was to fill up our engines… transfer the water to our brush trucks that are more mobile and can get to those hot spots,” said Jason Penny, with Tampa Fire Rescue.
Tampa Bay Bob Buckhorn visited the scene and reminds residents that brush fires can happen even in urban environment.
“We haven’t had a lot of rain. I was at a fire last week where someone was burning trash in their backyard and it burned up two houses. So, just be smart. Don’t light fires in these types of environments, and just keep an eye on your neighbors,” Buckhorn said.
Residents of the Regency Cove Mobile Home Park watched as the fire burned across a canal from their homes. Most didn’t believe the fire would impact their property, but were still expressing concern.
“I mean it’s jumping, obviously,” said Jennifer Sharp. “You can see, all that was in flames. We have patches over here and when it goes black like it is now, it shoots right up, and the winds. The winds are going to tell us a lot.”
“Well, I don’t want it to jump over the water, but I don’t think it will. I hope it won’t,” said Helen Walker. “We’ve got enough space there, I think. I hope. If the wind shifts it could do a lot different.”
Crews will remain on scene to put out hot spots and prevent flair ups.
The cause of the blaze is unknown.
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