‘It’s hot work, it’s long hours’: Tampa Bay area firefighters feel impact of brush fires

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — As brush fires continue to burn through the Tampa Bay area Sunday night, first responders are feeling the impact, as the fires continue to be a concern.

This week alone, fires torched thousands of acres. They’re also starting to take a toll on those who are battling flames on the front lines.

Pasco officials responding to 20-acre brush fire

“Fighting fires right now, it’s hot work. It’s long hours,” Florida Forest Service Todd Chlanda said. “Our personnel have been away from their families for many long days. Our fire started on June 5 and there are some people that have been working 15-hour days.”

More than 4,000 acres have been destroyed by brush fires near River Ranch in Polk County.

Just last weekend, fire crews battled a 75-acre brush fire in North Port. Fire rescue worked through the night to keep it contained.

River Ranch Complex fire shows signs of more containment, officials monitoring

After weeks of little to no rain, first responders have been put to work.

“It doesn’t take very long for a spark, a very small fire, to become a large fire and it’s going to take some substantial widespread rainfall in the area to get us out of this high fire danger,” Chlanda said.

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