Forest fire forces residents to flee

Forest fire forcesresidents to flee

23 February 2007

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Ocala, USA — Firefighters battled a forest fire Thursday that scorched about80 acres, forced several people out of their homes and shut down a state roadrunning through Ocala National Forest.

Two helicopters with giant water buckets and firefighters with Marion CountyFire-Rescue and the U.S. Forest Service battled the blaze, The Ocala Star-Bannerreported. A seven-mile stretch along State Road 40 was charred, and about 20homes were evacuated.

Peter Wilcox was told to evacuate but chose to stay behind to spray water onhis house and yard.

”I was getting scared the wind would pick up and move the fire over here,”Wilcox said.

Firefighters said they received the call at 12:45 p.m., but some residents ofthe community said they saw some sparks as early as 8:30 a.m. By 6:15 p.m.,firefighters were able to contain the blaze.

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