(St Marys, GA) – Two wildfires were caused by lightning strikes on the north end of Cumberland Island on Sunday, June 22nd. Late afternoon winds caused the South Cut Fire to increase to 30 acres by Tuesday afternoon. A helicopter dropped several buckets of water on the fire throughout the day. Winds from storms that moved through the area on Wednesday have caused the South Cut Fire to increase to an estimated 500 acres. A total of three helicopters have been called in to assist with the efforts.
Until further notice, the north end of the Park will be closed, starting at the south end of the Wilderness boundary and continuing all the way to the northern tip of the island.
A 20 person inter-agency fire crew arrived on the National Seashore on Wednesday, June 24th and began suppression activities. Firefighters from Okefenokee Wildlife Refuge are also assisting the National Park Service in this effort. Several more crews are expected to arrive on the island by Friday.
Dry conditions and lightning strikes on the island have led to the recent wildfire in mid May as well as the current fires. No structures or cultural sites have been damaged thus far. For further information on the fires and Cumberland Island National Seashore please contact the park at (912) 882-4336.