Thursday morning finds fire situation worsened - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Thursday morning finds fire situation worsened

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April 26, 2007

Waycross -- The Georgia Forestry Commission believed to have the Ware County Wildfires 70 percent contained before the fire flared back up again in the Okefenokee Swamp and Astoria area. Now it's dropped back to 50 percent containment.

They are calling this portion of the fire The Big Turn Around Fire. At just above 8,000 acres, this fire is now giving them the most trouble so they've called on some extra help to get it out.

As the Ware County Wildfire continues to grow and burn on...the nation's been taking notice, and foresters have come from all over the country to help the Georgia Forestry Commission get this out.

"We have crews from South Carolina, Texas, we have crews from North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, Louisiana, of course Georgia and Florida," says   Buck Kline, a Lowndes County Forester.

Over three hundred total. A sight hardly ever seen in Georgia.

"Now in Georgia you rarely see this occur where you have folks from all over the United States because normally we don't have these types of conditions and this big of fire," said Byron Haire of the Georgia Forestry Commission.

Despite the help, as this fire continues to grow...even these resources can be spread thin.

"One of the problems we are facing now is we've got fire we're dealing with on both sides of the swamp," said Haire.

And with Chinooks, forestry planes, and helicopters already on their team...they are calling in for more help to battle this blaze from above.

"Aircraft with the amount of fires going on around the Southeast, were hard to get, however, all our orders we placed have been filled," said Kline.

On top of this help, many of the fire fighters who were sent home Tuesday after a great day of progress were called back to help keep the Okefenokee fire from spreading and ruining any structures in the area.

The Georgia Forestry Commission says this fire has some of the most, if not the most, resources ever brought in to fight one fire.