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Hundreds evacuated as wildfires rage in Florida Panhandle

Florida Wildfires
Posted at 8:35 AM, May 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-07 13:48:54-04

PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) — Authorities say firefighters in the Florida Panhandle battled wildfires through the night that have forced hundreds of people to evacuate from their homes.

Thursday afternoon, they added that the threat is far from over.

Authorities say this started as a prescribed burn on private property. 17 structures have burned, and crews are struggling to contain the fire thanks to windy conditions.

Panhandle fires force evacuations

A more than 575-acre fire in Walton County prompted about 500 people to evacuate. Authorities there say multiple structures were lost in the fire, which was 65% contained Thursday morning.

Another wildfire broke out Monday afternoon in neighboring Santa Rosa County as high winds and low humidity caused the blaze to expand 10 times in size.

The Florida Forest Service said multiple structures have been lost in the 2,000-acre fire in Santa Rosa County.

Because of the fire, I-10 has been closed from Avalon Blvd to Highway 87 in the area.