The fire “far from being controlled” ravaged more than 8000 hectares

The fire affects an area of ​​8,500 hectares in the Spanish region of Extremadura (west). The Spanish and Portuguese firefighters mobilized hoped this Saturday to deal him “a big blow”, said the authorities. “There are a lot of resources on the ground and the work we are doing is very intense,” said civil protection coordinator Nieves Villar, noting that there was little wind in the area.

“It is a fire that is better contained”, welcomed Villar from Pinofranqueado, a locality close to the burning forest, while specifying that we are still “far from being able to say that it is under control”. Firefighters from Portugal joined their Spanish colleagues, explained the coordinator, pointing out that there are “more than 600 participants”.

The most affected country in Europe in 2022

In total, the disaster area measures between “8,000 and 8,500 hectares, but (…) it will be necessary to wait a few days before being able to draw the contours more precisely”, specified the coordinator. Some 700 residents have been evacuated from their homes and their return home is not currently planned.

While summer, the season for forest fires, has not yet arrived, Spain has already suffered several, after being the most affected country in Europe in 2022, with almost 500 fires that have devoured more than 300,000 hectares, according to the European Forest Fire Information System (EFFIS).

A European country on the front line in the face of climate change, Spain has been experiencing an increase in heat waves for several years, with increasingly rare and irregular rainfall. The first quarter of this year was the “driest” since records began in 1961, according to the National Meteorological Agency.

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