WHO: Southwest Florida Water Management District (District) land management staff.
WHAT: District land management staff will set prescribed fires in a controlled setting, which can reduce the risk of wildfires burning out of control, as many Floridians witnessed during the state’s wildfire emergency in 2017.
WHERE: Lower Hillsborough Wilderness Preserve located at 14302 Morris Bridge Road, in Thonotosassa (Media should meet at the main entrance to be escorted back to the fire line.)
WHEN: Wednesday, Jan. 30, at 10:30 a.m. (Weather permitting– we will confirm with media before the event.)
WHY: The Florida Cabinet has designated the fourth Sunday in January as the start of Prescribed Fire Awareness Week to educate the public on the role fire plays in Florida’s natural systems.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Some major benefits of prescribed fire include:
- Reducing overgrown plants, which decreases the risk of catastrophic wildfires
- Promoting the growth of new, diverse plants
- Maintaining the character and condition of wildlife habitat
- Maintaining access for public recreation
The District conducts prescribed fires on approximately 35,000 acres each year.