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East Japan wildfire under control after burning 106 hectares of mountain forests in 9 days

A Ground Self-Defense helicopter carries a bucket of water to extinguish wildfire in Ashikaga, Tochigi Prefecture, on March 1, 2021. (Mainichi/Yuzuru Ota)

ASHIKAGA, Tochigi -- A wildfire that raged though mountain forests in east Japan from Feb. 21 has finally been brought under control, the Ashikaga Municipal Government announced on March 1.

    Authorities confirmed from a helicopter on the afternoon of March 1 that smoke and flames were under control. An evacuation advisory for 305 households around the site was also lifted. Firefighters expect to completely extinguish the fire soon.

    The wildfire broke out on the afternoon of Feb. 21 near the summit of Mount Ryogai not far from the center of the city. The blaze spread to Mount Tengu to the west due to dry air and strong winds, burning about 106 hectares of forest land. Though a shrine on Mount Ryodai burned down, no injury or damage to houses was confirmed.

    (Japanese original by Yuzuru Ota, Ashikaga Local Bureau)

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