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September 01, 2012 07:38 PM

Wildfire In Northwest Nebraska Grows Into SD

Winds and dry heat helped whip flames of a wildfire in northwest Nebraska that grew by nearly 78 square miles in a day.

Nebraska Emergency Management Agency spokeswoman Jodie Fawl says the fire between Chadron and Rushville grew by Saturday to more than 93 square miles - an area bigger than the size of Nebraska's state capital of Lincoln. The wildfire had traversed the state line into South Dakota overnight, forcing the evacuations of several South Dakota communities, as well as a number of residents along a rural county road on the Nebraska side.

The blaze is one of three large wildfires sparked by lightning earlier in the week in the tinder-dry northwestern corner of Nebraska. The other two fires burning to the west have burned about 115 square miles.

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