Some evacuations lifted, I-95 reopened

By Lisa McDonald, Assignment Editor, lmcdonald@wkmg.com
Published On: Mar 11 2013 12:45:28 PM EDT
Updated On: Mar 04 2013 12:49:59 AM EST

Almost a dozen homes were destroyed over the past weekend due to brush fires with hundreds of people having to be evacuated and two major highways shut down as well. With temperatures dropping, the cold could increase the threat for potential fires.

VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. -

Almost a dozen homes were destroyed over the past weekend due to brush fires with hundreds of people having to be evacuated and two major highways shut down as well.

With temperatures dropping, the cold could increase the threat for more potential fires.

Florida Highway patrol troopers reopened Interstate 95 in Ormond Beach on Saturday after smoke from a brush fire had it closed most of the day.

Troopers said they had to shut down a portion of the Interstate because of brush fire smoke that was blowing east from a wildfire off Shedd Lane.

Officials said the brush fire flared up Saturday afternoon and quickly spread because of gusty winds.

Firefighters with Volusia and Flagler counties are working a 1,000 acre brush fire, called the Durrance fire, near Ormond Beach, officials said.

Saturday evening, officials lifted most of the evacuations orders.  All but 50 homes are protected and safe, officials said.

Officials said the original evacuation included about 300 homes in the Southern Pines subdivision, the Deep Creek section of Hunter's Ridge and other areas.

Troopers said they shut down northbound and southbound traffic between mile markers 270 and 272 near State Road 40 Saturday afternoon.

Smoke could be seen blowing directly over the interstate, forcing troopers to shut down the road.

Officials said the fire has reached 1,000 acres and was 75% contained Saturday evening.

Traffic remained backed up for several miles on 95, but troopers will remain to monitor conditions.

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