Second brush fire in PSL neighborhood

Posted at 11:38 PM, May 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-17 00:08:49-04

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Dry conditions continue to keep the risk for brush fires high, especially for those who live on the Treasure Coast.

Monday night, St. Lucie County fire fighters monitored a wooded near Savona Blvd. and Gatlin Blvd. where a brush fire about half-acre in size sparked during the afternoon.

The size didn’t startle nearby residents, but the frequency of fires in the area recently has them worried.

“You are helpless, there’s nothing you can do, nothing you can do,” said nearby resident, Jim Ezell.

The fire was only yards from his house.

“You just never know when this wind starts blowing which way it’s going to go,” Ezell said.

He’s lived in his home 8-years. He had never seen a brush fire until this year.

“This is the second one,” he said. There was another brush fire on the street in late March. “I've got a $350,000 home here I don’t want to see go up in flames, you know?

Fire fighters put the fire out quickly, checking for hot spots throughout the evening.

“It’s very dry, you know. We haven’t had rain in awhile, so everything is drying out,” said District Chief Kyle Stirrat. He was among the fire fighters also surprised to be back on the street so soon.

“It is unusual to get a fire right next to another fire. Although these two are separate fires, they are very close in proximity,” Stirrat said.

Stirrat says the dry conditions and hot temperatures could be to blame.

Ezell has his own idea of what is causing the fires. He says he has complained to police several times about people smoking in the woods.

“We’ve run them off a couple times,” Ezell said.

Now, he’s keeping his yard green and well-watered. He also trims trees away from his home and watches for dry debris that could spread a fire toward his house.

“If it’s happened twice, I'm sure it’s going to happen again.”