Rainfall eases wildfire threat, but officials urge caution

Mar 10, 2022, 8:55 AM | Updated: 8:58 am

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (AP) — While rainfall has improved conditions across much of the Florida Panhandle, state officials said Thursday that the volume of dead trees and vegetation left by a Category 5 hurricane in 2018 remains a threat for additional wildfires.

Without additional significant rainfall, the debris left on the ground by Hurricane Michael will quickly dry out and serve as fuel for wildfires, the Florida Forest Service said in a news release.

In the meantime, firefighters are continuing to improve containment lines on the Chipola Complex fire and monitor any new activity.

The rain was a break from days of dry, windy conditions that had fueled three wildfires in and around Bay County, Florida.

Over the weekend, residents were evacuated from 1,100 houses in Bay County, but more than half were allowed to return home Monday. So far, only two homes have been destroyed and another dozen damaged, with the destruction occurring last Friday.

The fire that caused that damage, the 875-acre (355-hectare) Adkins Avenue Fire, was 85% contained, fire officials said Thursday.

Hurricane Michahel left behind 72 million tons (65 million metric tons) of destroyed trees that have provided fuel for the fire. The hurricane was directly responsible for 16 deaths and about $25 billion in damage in the U.S.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Georgia Sen. Raphael Warnock campaigns on Sept. 2, 2022, in Atlanta with other members of historica...
Associated Press

In Georgia, how sports explain a political battleground

SMYRNA, Ga. (AP) — The reception area of a metro Atlanta office suite is a veritable museum of Herschel Walker’s football success for the University of Georgia Bulldogs and the NFL. The office is part of the Atlanta Braves’ real estate development in the Major League Baseball franchise’s new suburban home. This headquarters for Georgia’s […]
8 hours ago
Sterling Sheffield, an assistant professor of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences at the Univers...
Associated Press

FDA change ushers in cheaper, easier-to-get hearing aids

It’s now a lot easier — and cheaper — for many hard-of-hearing Americans to get help. Hearing aids can now be sold without a prescription from a specialist. Over-the-counter, or OTC, hearing aids started hitting the market in October at prices that can be thousands of dollars lower than prescription hearing aids. About 30 million […]
8 hours ago
FILE - Light illuminates part of the Supreme Court building at dusk on Capitol Hill in Washington, ...
Associated Press

Supreme Court weighs ‘most important case’ on democracy

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court is about to confront a new elections case, a Republican-led challenge asking the justices for a novel ruling that could significantly increase the power of state lawmakers over elections for Congress and the presidency. The court is set to hear arguments Wednesday in a case from North Carolina, where […]
8 hours ago
In this photo released by Xinhua News Agency, an image captured off a screen at the Jiuquan Satelli...
Associated Press

3 Chinese astronauts return to Earth after 6-month mission

BEIJING (AP) — Three Chinese astronauts landed in a northern desert on Sunday after six months working to complete construction of the Tiangong station, a symbol of the country’s ambitious space program, state TV reported. A capsule carrying commander Chen Dong and astronauts Liu Yang and Cai Xuzhe touched down at a landing site in […]
8 hours ago
FILE - The logo of the Organization of the Petroleoum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is seen outside of...
Associated Press

No OPEC+ oil shakeup as Russian price cap stirs uncertainty

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The Saudi-led OPEC oil cartel and allied producers including Russia did not change their targets for shipping oil to the global economy amid uncertainty about the impact of new Western sanctions against Russia that could take significant amounts of oil off the market. The decision at a meeting of oil ministers […]
8 hours ago
Associated Press

Police: Vandalism suspected in North Carolina power outage

MOORE COUNTY, N.C. (AP) — Authorities in North Carolina believe vandalism may have caused a power outage that affected thousands of customers Saturday night. A mass power outage in several communities beginning just after 7 p.m. Saturday “is being investigated as a criminal occurrence,” the Moore County Sheriff’s Office said in a Facebook post. “As […]
8 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

(Desert Institute for Spine Care photo)...
DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

Why DISC is world renowned for back and neck pain treatments

Fifty percent of Americans and 90% of people at least 50 years old have some level of degenerative disc disease.
...
Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet can improve everyday life

Quantum Fiber supplies unlimited data with speeds up to 940 mbps, enough to share 4K videos with coworkers 20 times faster than a cable.
...
SCHWARTZ LASER EYE CENTER

Key dates for Arizona sports fans to look forward to this fall

Fall brings new beginnings in different ways for Arizona’s professional sports teams like the Cardinals and Coyotes.
Rainfall eases wildfire threat, but officials urge caution