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Ark. forest officials: 51 fires fought since Fri.

A news release from the commission Monday said the fires are being fought with several single-engine air tankers that drop water on the blazes, three stationed at Hot Springs, and one each at Monticello, Camden and Searcy.

The commission said much of Arkansas remains at high risk for wildfires because of the recent dry weather. According to the release, county judges in 48 counties have issued burn bans: Ashley, Baxter, Bradley, Chicot, Clark, Clay, Cleburne, Cleveland, Columbia, Conway, Craighead, Crittenden, Cross, Dallas, Desha, Drew, Faulkner, Garland, Grant, Greene, Hempstead, Hot Spring, Howard, Independence, Jackson, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lee, Lincoln, Lonoke, Mississippi, Monroe, Montgomery, Nevada, Ouachita, Perry, Phillips, Pike, Poinsett, Polk, Prairie, Pulaski, Saline, Sevier, St. Francis, Union, White and Woodruff.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Weapons disposal drawing to a close at Pine Bluff Arsenal

Officials on Thursday announced that the last of one-ton containers with mustard gas had been transported from storage at the arsenal to the disposal facility.

Lt. Col. Nathaniel Farmer, commander of the Pine Bluff Chemical Activity operation, said a total of 5,879 containers were used to deliver nerve and blister agents under strict safety and security procedures over a five-year period.


The chemical weapons stockpile has been stored at Pine Bluff Arsenal since the 1940's.The disposal of the ton containers at the PBCDF is the final campaign of the chemical weapons disposal mission.

The news release said final disposal and elimination of the mustard agent is tentatively scheduled for December 2010. The chemical-warfare munitions are being destroyed under terms of an international treaty.