Disasters & Accidents

Hundreds evacuated as fires, high temperatures blight parts of Europe

Madrid Desk, Jul 25 (EFE).- Firefighters are tackling blazes in several European countries amid persistent soaring temperatures across much of the continent Monday.

Wildfires have devoured thousands of hectares of land in Greece.

A large wildfire in the Dadia-Lefkimi-Soufli Forest National Park, near the Turkish border, is threatening southeastern Europe’s last remaining colony of black vultures.

Experts who arrived in the area Sunday said it was inevitable that the flames had burned black vulture nests, and those of other birds of prey.

Some 320 firefighters equipped with 68 vehicles, two planes and four helicopters, were deployed to the blaze. Forecasts of rain in the area have offered a glimmer of hope that the fire could be brought under control after five days of extinguishing efforts.

A fire in southern Greece on Sunday prompted the preemptive evacuation of six villages.

In Italy, 500 villagers were evacuated from Cinigiano, Tuscany, after a fire spread along the mountain slope and damaged property.

Italy’s heat wave peaked on Sunday with red weather warnings issued for 19 cities, including Rome and Milan. The hot weather is paired with the country’s worst drought in 70 years.

The hot African air that is shooting the mercury up across the region is forecast to last until at least the end of the month.

Meanwhile in Spain, almost all the fires that have been raging across the country were stabilized Monday apart from a fire near Burgos, in the Castile and Leon region.

The blaze erupted on Sunday and has affected some 3,000 hectares of land and forced the evacuation of some 500 people.

In the northwestern region of Galicia, seven forest fires in the provinces of Lugo and Ourense remained active while another four have been extinguished. The fires have devastated a total of 30,465 hectares in the region.

Spanish police have arrested a German man for allegedly starting seven fires in the Spanish island of Mallorca. The arrest was made after local police found evidence on a surveillance device that the man had sped off in his car after noticing an officer.


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