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Alabama Firefighters Will Help Georgia

By Associated Press

Montgomery, AL – The Alabama Forestry Commission will dispatch another group of its firefighters to southeast Georgia Wednesday to help battle devastating wildfires.

Commission spokeswoman Coleen Vansant said replacement crews will take over the duties of four others whose 14 day assignment ends tonight. The new crew will also be on a two-week assignment in Waycross, Georgia.

Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue says he will continue seeking federal money to offset an estimated 18 (m) million dollar cost of fighting wildfires that have burned more than 135 square miles of forest and swampland in southeast Georgia.

Perdue took an aerial tour of the fire zone yesterday. He told reporters he's not sure yet how much of the cost will go to the state and local governments in the affected areas.

The largest wildfire ever recorded in Georgia has scorched 87-thousand acres of drought-stricken forest and Okefenokee Swamp land since April 16th. It has destroyed 21 homes, and several smaller fires have broken out close to the large blaze.

More than 800 firefighters have been working to contain the giant fire in Ware County for more than two weeks.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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