West Mims fire continues to spread; Duval County under smoke advisory

Ronnie Rodgers


This wildfire is 102 times the size of UNF’s campus. Picture courtesy of Channel 4

If you’ve been seeing a slew of brown clouds lately it is the cause of a wildfire in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. The West Mims fire was caused by lightning strike April 6 and is currently active over 208 square miles. Wind has pushed smoke into Northeast Florida and has caused the fire to extend over Highway 94 causing evacuations in Georgia.

With over 600 people working to extinguish the fire, InciWeb fire information says it is only 12 percent contained. Low humidity, high temperatures, and windy conditions have allowed the wildfire to continue spreading over the weekend. The fire is over 100 times bigger than UNF’s campus and because of the blaze, Duval County is under a smoke advisory.


The Center for Disease Control has some tips to keep people safe during the advisory.

  • People should keep their windows and doors closed as much as possible.
  • Follow the local news and doctors warnings on the advisory.
  • Don’t vacuum, burn candles or light fireplaces because this increases indoor air pollution.
  • Dust masks don’t protect your lungs from small wildfire particles, so minimize your outdoor exposure.



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