Seven Killed in Two Forest Fires in Central China

Seven Killed in Two Forest Fires in Central China

3 February 2008

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China — Seven people were killed in two forest fires in central China’s Hunan Province, according to local authorities Saturday.

One fire occurred in the Qiaotou Village of Hengyang at about 10 a.m. Friday, when 13 villagers were burning the weeds on hills for regeneration of trees.

Eight of the villagers managed to escape, including one injured, while the rest five were killed.

At least 300 people, including 89 forest policemen, joined the fire fighting.

Nearly 26.7 hectares of forest were damaged in the fire.

Another blaze broke out on Friday in an area between the Loudi City and Hunan’s capital Changsha, where two people were killed.

Both fires were extinguished by Saturday and losses are being counted.

Hunan in this season is prone to forest fires, said Zhang Lin, head of the forest police bureau of Hunan, who warns people to be alert of the fires.

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