State Officials Anticipate Active Wildfire Season

Mar 12, 2018

Peak fire season runs from late winter into spring and that has the Florida Forest Service on high alert. 

Crews have been systematically conducting controlled burns across the state in an effort to prevent wildfires over the next few months.

A drier-than-usual start to the year has helped spark more than 650 wildfires across the state already.

Florida Storms Facebook Video Screenshot

Temperatures will lower to around 30 degrees Wednesday night in Southwest Florida. It's the second time cold weather has prompted local shelters to open in 2018, so far. 

The eastern third of the country, including the Sunshine State, is experiencing a “January thaw” this week. And yes, there is some science to it. But with another arctic air mass looming this weekend, the warm up will be brief. Subfreezing temperatures are possible again in north Florida by Sunday or Monday morning.

Read more in our Weather section

As Florida experiences unusually cold temperatures and even snow in some parts, wildlife officials are keeping a close eye on vulnerable manatees and sea turtles.

The Arctic blast sweeping much of the country brought wind-chill warnings and the threat of frost as far south as Fort Lauderdale, where homeless shelters opened their doors for people hoping to escape the cold.