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State of emergency as 1,000 acres burned

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Sept. 14, 2008) - Samoa’s Prime Minister, Tuila’epa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, has declared an emergency as a bush fire continues to burn near two villages on Savaii island.

[PIR editor’s note: Savaii, Samoa’s biggest island, is just north of the main island of Upolu.]

The blaze near Asau and A’opo broke out a week ago and more than one thousand acres of land has been burnt.

Fire-fighters and Red Cross volunteers as well as villagers and several private businesses near the affected villages are working 24 hours to contain the fire.

The Disaster management Operation, or DMO, says two of the fire fighters have been injured

The DMO has predicted the fire will reach the residential area of Asau village and preparations are being made for school buildings to be used as evacuation shelter

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