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Swamp fire's "skunking" brings awful smell to west Pasco

HUDSON — Firefighters call it "skunking.''

For the reason why, you might turn to residents of western Pasco County, where a 50-acre swamp continued to burn late Tuesday, leaving a pungent smell that will linger for a week.

"It can break through the surface in different places, and it produces this acrid-smelling smoke," said Division of Forestry spokesman Don Ruths. "It a spongy mucklike organic material that burns, but burns very slowly.

While you may not see it, you can definitely smell it.

Firefighters said the swamp fire near State Road 52 and Moon Lake Road in Pasco County is about 90 percent contained. Investigators believe it may have been deliberately set

No homes in the nearby Veranda subdivision were harmed. Pasco Fire Rescue and forestry firefighters have rotated duties to stop any flareups. Pasco sheriff's deputies are investigating the suspicious blaze.

Pasco government officials have advised people to be cautious with fires during this very dry season.

County commissioners on Tuesday approved a countywide burn ban in response to the severe drought conditions.

Swamp fire's "skunking" brings awful smell to west Pasco 02/24/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 24, 2009 10:30pm]
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