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Australian wildfire destroys homes

More than two dozen homes have been destroyed or badly damaged and almost 30 people have sought medical treatment as a result of a massive wildfire that has raged out of control for days across farms and woodland in southern Australia, officials said today.

South Australia premier Jay Weatherill said hundreds of firefighters have taken advantage of milder conditions in recent days to attempt to contain the blaze, which has razed 31,000 acres (12,500 hectares) of countryside in hills north-west of the state capital, Adelaide.

He says 29 people had been injured or admitted to hospital with conditions such as severe asthma since the fire started on Friday.

Network Ten television news reported that the only serious casualty is a farmer who suffered suspected spinal injuries protecting his property.

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