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Archive for Sunday, July 30, 2006

Six wildfires destroy at least three homes

July 30, 2006

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— At least three homes were destroyed and at least three others were damaged by one of the six wildfires burning in the Nebraska Panhandle.

About 700 firefighters were battling the fires, which have scorched more than 62 1/2 square miles and continued to be fueled by triple-digit temperatures, low humidity and 20-mph winds.

"As difficult as this situation is, it could be a lot worse," Gov. Dave Heineman said in a teleconference Saturday.

Heineman visited the city of Chadron the day after 1,200 people evacuated their homes and firefighters successfully defended the Chadron State College campus. A subdivision on the south side of Chadron was briefly evacuated again Saturday.

Firefighters from local, state and federal agencies were battling the blazes, and helicopters and tanker planes were trying to slow the fires from the air, officials said.

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