Foresters cut fire breaks quickly - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Foresters cut fire breaks quickly

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April 20, 2007

Waycross -- Conditions for firefighters in Ware County deteriorated quickly today, lower humidity, and gusting winds made it harder for those on the front line to keep this fire contained.  On the south end, there have been move evacuations near Maynor.

The front line of the fire was burning about 10 miles south of Waycross, where there aren't any roads.  The fire is burning through the tops of the trees, that's what the forestry commission calls crowning.  That's why they're cutting so many fire breaks to stop the fire from spreading through the treetops.

"We're going to continue to try and contain the fire and try to squeeze it as best we can down to its smallest size, the smaller we can get it the easier it will be to go in with helicopters and actually put the fire out with water," said said GA Forestry Commission PIO Eric Mosley.

To keep and possibly strengthen that 35 percent containment, the Forestry Commission continued to strengthen those fire breaks they've cut through the woods.  One Forestry Commission member likened it to Interstate 285 the perimeter around Atlanta, through the woods.  By cutting those lines at the fires flanks they hope to force it to burn out.

The concern is that some of the fire has jumped the break and gotten into the swamp.  They are seeing some of that spot burning in several places.  If it continues to burn through the swamp, there is the fear is that it could run all the way to the coast.

More than 300 local departments are helping to keep structures through Ware County protected and forestry resources have poured in from four states.