Ware County wildfire still burning - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Ware County wildfire still burning

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April 16, 2007

Ware County - Firefighters and Forestry rangers are battling a huge and dangerous fire that's been blazing for twelve hours.

It forced evacuations and school and road closures.

County officials are evacuating anyone who lives from the Waycross City Limits down to Swany Chapel Road in Manor southwest of Waycross.

They're also asking people who live in nearby areas to be ready to evacuate at a moment's notice.

High winds spread the fire rapidly.

Emergency management officials still aren't sure how much land the fire has scorched and how many homes and other buildings are threatened.

A shelter is open tonight at Waycross Middle School for people who had to evacuate and classes are canceled for tomorrow at all Ware County schools.  "Ware County notified us that all schools will be canceled tomorrow for students. However, all teachers and staff are being asked to report to school as usual and teachers at Ruskin Elementary are being asked to report to Waycross Middle School," says James Ginn, Public Information officer for Ware County.

Emergency managers set up a command center at Ruskin Elementary school in the middle of blaze.

Firefighters say they will continue working all night to try to put out the fire but they say it's virtually impossible to contain it until the wind dies down.

About a for mile stretch of Highway 84 remains closed.

Monday evening, the smoke was visible 60-miles away from the fire.