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Major wildfires continue to rage in Portugal, Spain
17 August 2022 16:25

Major wildfires continue to rage in Portugal, Spain

OVIEDO. KAZINFORM Firefighters continued to struggle on Tuesday, particularly in the Spanish region of Alicante and Portugal’s highest mountain range, as meteorological conditions are complicating efforts to control two massive wildfires.

In the Serra da Estrela mountain range in Portugal, a blaze has caused 22 injuries, three of which are serious, since it was first triggered 10 days ago, Anadolu Agency reports.

Now, around 1,000 firefighters are working tirelessly to contain the flames, which took a turn for the worse on Monday and forced dozens of residents to evacuate their homes.

On Tuesday, Madrid emergency services reported that dozens of concerned residents called to report the strong smell of smoke, but explained that the smoke was coming from Portugal.

Provisional estimates suggest that the fire has charred 14,000 hectares (34,594 acres) of land so far.

The strong winds and low humidity will make taming the fire difficult on Tuesday, said the head of Portugal’s National Civil Protection Authority Andre Fernandes.

«Today will be very complicated, and it will take a lot of work to ensure the wildfire won’t affect an even larger area,» he told media.

The situation is similar in Spain’s Alicante province in Valencia, where a violent forest fire has consumed an estimated 10,000 hectares (24,711 acres) of land since Saturday night.

There, hundreds more people were evacuated between Monday night and Tuesday, bringing the total number of evacuees up to around 1,600.

This is the largest forest fire in Valencia in a decade.

Meanwhile, Spanish firefighters continue to fight other significant blazes in Galicia and the Castellon province of Valencia, where around 400 people were evacuated on Tuesday.

According to the latest update from the European Forest Fire Information System, the EU is on track for a record-breaking wildfire season this summer.

Extreme hot and dry conditions this summer have provided fuel for fires that have consumed 659,541 hectares (1.6 million acres) – an area twice the size of Luxembourg.

So far this year, Spain, Romania and Portugal have been the hardest hit EU countries.


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