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Posted: January 31, 2014 12:43 p.m.

18 horses perish in fire at equestrian center

BISHOP, Ga. (AP) — Authorities say 18 horses have died after an early-morning fire that destroyed their stable at a northeast Georgia equestrian center.

Oconee County Fire Chief Bruce Thaxton said the blaze was reported at 1:36 a.m. Friday at the Brookwood Equestrian Center near the small town of Bishop.

Thaxton said one of the 18 horses was able to get out of the barn, but was injured so badly that it had to be put down.

Thaxton said the state fire marshal and Oconee County sheriff's investigators are trying to determine what caused the blaze and where it started.

The Athens Banner-Herald reports (http://bit.ly/1igXA8G) that seven tanker trucks and 28 volunteer firefighters responded to the fire. It had been reported by a tenant who lived at the boarding and training facility.

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