Residents linger despite fire evacuation orders

Davis says that there are 60 bulldozers, eight helicopters and three heavy air tankers on the scene to help fight the fire in the tiny, rural town.

Facing an evacuation order, Pair and his wife packed up their valuables and had a ladder standing by to put sprinklers on their roof Monday.

Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge supervisory ranger Susan Heisey said in a statement that the small Charlton County communities of Moniac and Canady Loop have been ordered to evacuate.

Davis said the emergency manager later clarified that the evacuation was not mandatory and that only the people in the homes closest to the fire were asked to leave.

"The swamp has burned several times over the years, but the winds have pushed it out of the boundaries, so now they're having to evacuate some areas at this time", said Capt. Hauesler.

On Sunday, a fire in Martin County burned 28 acres along Interstate 95.

A mandatory evacuation has broadened as a wildfire near the Georgia-Florida line threatens small communities on the edge of the Okefenokee Swamp.

Hundreds of personnel are fighting the flames, authorities say. Firefighters with tractor plows worked to carve a path of bare soil around the town to keep the flames away.

Charlton County schools were closed Monday because of the blaze and a shelter was opened at a recreation center a safe distance away.

St. George residents are being allowed back into their homes to retrieve people and livestock as a mandatory evacuation remains in effect as the West Mims Fire continues to pose a threat to the west and has jumped Georgia 94 and appeared to be progressing south at 10:30 p.m.

One man who lives near evacuated area tells us he's monitoring the fire to see if he has to leave.

"We'll probably be standing by their structures assisting them to protect structures", said Parker. "And we don't know how we're going to get them out".

The fire is only 12 percent contained as of this weekend, with more than 530 people working on containment and also controlling structure fires in the area.

Putnam said in a news release that almost 125 active wildfires were burning in Florida as of Monday morning.

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