Big Cypress brush fire grows to 36,000 acres, 70 percent contained

The brush fire burning in the Big Cypress National Preserve grew to 36,350 acres Tuesday, according to fire information officer Mike Johnson.

Seventy percent of the fire had been contained by Tuesday night, Johnson said. The number of personnel had been reduced to 317, but Johnson said this was as some equipment and personnel were not needed for certain controlled portions of the fire.

Winds were likely to take smoke that was blowing over the east coast of Florida toward Naples and Fort Myers on Tuesday night and into Wednesday morning, Johnson said.

He cautioned drivers taking U.S. 41 to be careful as fire equipment is moving in and around the fire on the road.

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