NewsForest fire reaches seaside resort in Greece: beach and...

Forest fire reaches seaside resort in Greece: beach and hotels evacuated

Created: 07/24/2022, 09:20 am

Feuerwehrleute und Freiwillige kämpfen zusammen gegen die Flammen der Waldbrände auf der Ferieninsel Lesbos an.
Firefighters and volunteers work together to battle blazes from forest fires on the resort island of Lesvos. © Eurokinissi/dpa

A forest fire has reached a seaside resort in Greece. Several houses and the beach were evacuated.

Athens – Forest fires continue to rage in southern Europe. Greece is currently being hit particularly hard. A major fire destroyed the forest of Dadia National Park, one of the largest forested areas in south-eastern Europe. A second major fire raged on the south side of the holiday island of Lesvos. The civil defense ordered the evacuation of the coastal town of Vatera.

Fire in Greece: Popular seaside resort has to be evacuated

On Saturday, the edge of the forest and the correspondingly heavy smoke development reached the seaside resort, which is popular with tourists. Two hotels and more than 90 houses had to be evacuated, reports the Tagesschau , citing the local police. A total of 450 people were brought to safety.

The Coast Guard had previously announced that they had evacuated the beach. According to dpa information, residents of Vatera had sought shelter here.

Waldbrände in Griechenland
A large fire raged on the south side of the holiday island of Lesbos. The civil defense ordered the evacuation of the village of Vatera. © Eurokinissi/dpa

At least ten houses in the village were damaged, local media reported.

Forest fires are raging in Greece – emergency services at the limit

The situation in the nature reserve of Dadia in north-eastern Greece remained difficult. The flames destroyed a biotope where numerous birds of prey and wild animals live. The area is densely forested and there are hardly any roads. For this reason, the fire brigade is trying to contain the flames from the air with firefighting aircraft and helicopters, a spokesman for the fire brigade said on Saturday afternoon.

Most of Greece’s 86 fire-fighting planes and helicopters are fighting the flames, according to civil defense. Smaller fires were raging in the Peloponnese peninsula, Greek state radio reported.

Drought and high temperatures would hit almost all parts of Greece in the coming days and create “the perfect backdrop” for further fires, meteorologists warned on the radio. Temperatures in central Greece were already around 38 degrees early on Saturday morning. In some places, the thermometer should show values of more than 40 degrees Celsius in the afternoon, the meteorological office said. It should be even hotter at the beginning of next week, and the heat will last until the beginning of August, it said. (dpa/rjs)

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