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Timber company suffers loses from northwoods fire

UNDATED (WSAU-Wheeler News)   A timber company was the main victim of the massive wildfire in northwest Wisconsin in mid-May. The Lyme Saint Croix company said it incurred over a million-dollars of damage, when most of its 5,200 acres in Douglas County were torched in the blaze.

Executive Sean Ross said the land was not insured for fire damage. The blaze blackened 74-hundred acres, destroyed 17 homes, and caused dozens of people to evacuate. It was the largest forest fire in Wisconsin in 33 years.

This week the state D-N-R said it would bill Ray Duerr Logging of Rib Lake for the estimated $630,000 it cost to fight the wildfire. Sparks from one of the company's logging machines started the blaze. The D-N-R said it later learned that the machine had a fire suppression unit that was not maintained properly. Officials cited negligence in requiring the logging firm to pay for the fire-fighting costs.