Firefighters battle multiple blazes - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Firefighters battle multiple blazes

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By David Fuller
June 20, 2008

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - An female Albany firefighter was injured when she was hit by falling debris while fighting flames at a house at 1101 Duke Lane.  

The fire appears to have begun in the garage area, but so far investigators don't know how the fire started.

Firefighter Christy Bengis was possibly hit by debris that fell from the ceiling. She was taken to the hospital where we're told she was also treated for heat exhaustion. Investigators did not know who lived at the house, but neighbor Jessie James said a man had moved in about a month ago.

"I had just drove up in my driveway; my wife told me the neighbors house was on fire and I looked up around the awning area on the back and I could see the fire and smoke right over that area," said neighbor Jessie A. James Sr.

 "Then, by that time, she said let's get the dogs out from over there, so I want and got his dogs, and then by that time I looked around (and) the smoke was really smoking up around the chimney area and I called 911."

Firefighters were on the scene for a couple of hours.  Firefighter Christy Bengis is in good condition at Phoebe Putney hospital.

Earlier, firefighters in East Dougherty were busy putting out nine small grass fires along U.S. 19 South. Assistant Fire Chief Allen Cravey said the fires were in the 1400 to 1600 blocks of the highway.

He said they don't know how the grass fires started, but suspect the origin may have been sparks from a chain or other metal being dragged by a vehicle.

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