Rain expected to help in fighting Georgia wildfires

GILMER COUNTY, Ga. — Long overdue rain on the way is just what the Georgia Forestry Commission has been hoping for.

Wildfires continue to break out, including one in Gilmer County, that has burned a total of 100 acres so far. Much of the area is logging territory, but there are also homes in the vicinity.

Forest rangers are using five bulldozers to contain the fire, while waiting for the rain.

Rangers told Channel 2's Berndt Petersen that they are expecting to fully contain the fire soon and an inch or two of rain should make sure it doesn't flare up again.


"I don't think any of us can predict the future as far as exactly how much it will take to quell this, but a couple of inches will go a long way,” Hannah Cowart, with the Georgia Forestry Commission, said.

The drought has made this fire season one for the record books. Officials say it started earlier than in the past and is growing worse by the day since not a drop of rain has fallen across most of north Georgia for several weeks.

Some officials have stated this situation will require a rain with a name, something of tropical storm proportions, to finish off the wildfire threat once and for all. But the prediction of at least an inch or two over the next few days may at least turn the tide.

“As long as it can soak into the ground and really cool off the fires, that will help our situation a good bit,” Cowart said.