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5/03/2007

Raging wildfires force evacuations in Florida

ORMOND BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Florida firefighters worked Wednesday to extinguish several blazes that had consumed more than 1,500 acres in Volusia, Lake and Flagler counties, forcing the evacuations of several homes.
About 1,000 acres of brush and swampland were burning in Ormond Beach near the Flagler-Volusia county line. Officials expected it to get larger before being contained.
"The fire is not contained and continues to burn in an area that is very difficult to reach and operate," said Timber Weller, a spokesman for the Florida Division of Forestry. "We anticipate that the fire will increase in size, although not dramatically, because of the extremely dry woods in that area."
The blaze was first spotted Tuesday afternoon about four miles west of Interstate 95. The cause of the fire had not yet been determined.

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BOISE, Idaho - The West and Southeast face an increased wildfire risk this year because of ongoing drought and an expected hotter-than-average summer, the National Interagency Fire Center reported Tuesday.The center identified broad swaths of those regions - including all of Florida - and central Alaska as having increased chances of catching fire.
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