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Cost Of Neb., SD Fires Pegged At $3.2 Million

September 4, 2012, 1:06 PM

LINCOLN, NE -

The price tag for a series of blazes in northwest Nebraska and neighboring South Dakota has reached an estimated $3.2 million.

Nebraska Emergency Management Assistant Director Al Berndt said Tuesday that the Douthit and West Ash fires were expected to cost $2.5 million. Containing the Wellnitz fire in Nebraska and South Dakota will cost an estimated $700,000.

The estimates came as firefighters reported strong progress. Firefighter spokesman Bill Kight says authorities are "mopping up" remnants of the Wellnitz fire. The Douthit fire was 99 percent contained, and the West Ash fire was last reported as 55 percent contained.

Berndt says the federal government will cover firefighting costs on federal land that was burned, and the states will reimburse local departments for fire services on state land and private property.

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