Okefenokee wildfire grows to consume 61,800 acres
May 09, 2011 01:03 PM | 590 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
FOLKSTON, Ga. (AP) _ A rapidly growing wildfire in the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge has crossed the eastern edge of the swamp, where firefighters have managed to contain the blaze to a few acres on private land.

Fire officials said Monday the fire has burned more than 61,800 acres, or more than 96 square miles, inside the swamp’s 438,000 acres. Frank Sorrells, district ranger for the Georgia Forestry Commission, says firefighters con-tained the fire outside the swamp to just 18 acres of timberland after flames jumped fire control breaks surrounding the swamp Sunday night.

Sorrells says no communities are in immediate danger. But he says extremely dry conditions in the Okefenokee have helped the fire spread at rates as fast as 3 mph.

Officials say a lightning strike sparked the fire April 28.

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