For much of the day Thursday, thousands of people were away from homes in the Barefoot Resort and Pelican Bay areas.
And earlier in the afternoon, the media was given a first glimpse into the devastation the fire caused.
Around 6pm, emergency officials did announce that those who live in the Barefoot Resort area could go back into their homes, only if they live east of Highway 31, where some of the damage wasn't as as bad, and officials say it was safe to return. They were asked to show proper identification to reenter.
NewsChannel 15's Joel Allen lives in Barefoot Resort, and shared his experience from being woken in the middle of the night to evacuate, finding his house was being threatened, to the moment when he found out his house was okay. For Joel's story, and a tour of the damaged area with firefighters click on the video icon.