Florida Authorities Work to Contain Wildfire at Lake Okeechobee

May 7, 2008

Florida officials are working to contain a wildfire at Lake Okeechobee.

The state Division of Forestry says about 4,000 acres of muck and grass are burning on the dry lake bed near Moore Haven, about 80 miles west of West Palm Beach. Fires also are burning on grassy islands in the lake.

Authorities suspect arson. Officials say one fire began May 1. A second fire began around the same time. The two have since merged.

Firefighters say the blaze is contained within Lake Okeechobee’s dike.

Officials have been getting reports of a smoky smell and haze from Broward County up through the Treasure Coast. Winds shifts are expected to soon carry the smoke to the Gulf Coast.

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