15 Sep 2008

Rain in Samoa brings welcome relief for firefighters

7:48 pm on 15 September 2008

Disaster officials in Samoa say rain has quietened down a fire that was posing a serious threat to two villages on Savaii.

The blaze began four days and had burnt thousands of acres of bush, prompting the Government to declare a state of emergency, amid fears that villagers would need to be evacuated.

A Disaster Management official in Savaii, Filomena Nelson, says they were delighted to see the rain start falling.

But she says the fire is not completely out and the Government has extended the state of emergency.

"We have extended it for the next 48 hours. So we still have two days to ensure that we have fully extinguished the fire in both villages."

Around 100 firefighters have been combatting the fire while police are investigating the cause.