Florida Fire Under Control

A Florida brush fire is under control, thanks to some heavy rain. The fire burned about 1,600 acres near Naples Sunday.

Strong winds fanned the fire, damaging 10 homes and threatening almost 200 other buildings. At one point on Sunday, a 20-mile stretch of Interstate 75, the main road across the Florida Everglades commonly called Alligator Alley, had to be closed, but is now reopened. And 600 residents who were forced to evacuate their homes have returned.

Two firefighters battling the southern Florida blaze on Sunday suffered second-degree burns.

"The rain put a damper on the fire," said Lt. Paul France of the Florida Highway Patrol in Naples. "It knocked it down enough to give firefighters a break."

Two fires were on either side of the highway, one burning 1,300 acres, the other 300 acres. About 600 firefighters from five Florida counties spent the day fighting the blaze.

There was zero visibility in the area due to smoke, officials said.

"We do not know the cause," said Terence McElroy, spokesman for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. "We're still investigating, but we're not aware of a natural cause."

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