New neighbors immediately deal with fire in Golden Gate Estates

Published: May 25, 2021 5:29 PM EDT
Updated: May 25, 2021 6:14 PM EDT

A family that recently moved into a brand-new home in Golden Gate Estates almost lost it during the fire that sparked up in their community over the weekend, and they have not been alone. Others have also had their homes damaged and some homes have been destroyed.

Florida Forest Service said Tuesday the fire crews have been battling for days is at 80% containment.

“I wanted to cry,” Yudy Barbera said.

There have been a lot of emotions to process on 14th Avenue South and 16th Avenue South to begin the week, as fires destroyed people’s property and belongings.

“I was actually running around doing some errands, and my husband called me, ‘There is a fire, and we are not going to be back in the house,’” Barbera explained. “And I’m like, ‘What do you mean?’”

Barbera and her family built their home and moved in a week and a half ago. Flames were not the warm welcome they were expecting.

“My first thought is, ‘Oh, my god, my house is going to burn down, and we just got it,’” Barbera said.

Luckily for them, they can keep moving their boxes in.

“My husband came in first, and then I did, and you know, there was still fire going on and a lot of smoke, but I was like, ‘Oh, my god, my house is safe,” Barbera said.

Forestry says even though conditions have improved, there is still work to be done to put the fire out.

Until then, crews will stay at the scene in Golden Gate Estates to mop up.

“Something I learned, from now on I’m going to pack something in my car, a change of clothes, so if anything happens, I have that in my car,” said.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.