Friday, August 07, 2015

1,400 evacuated as wildfire rages in western Spain

Around 1,400 people had to be evacuated in the early hours of Friday morning as a wildfire raged out of control close to the town of Caceres in the Autonomous Community of Extremadura in western Spain.

The evacuations were from the small towns of Acebo and Perales del Puerto, as well as people staying at two campsites in the area as gusts of wind fanned the flames and also made it hard to predict the spread of the flames, the Extremadura Regional Authority informed.

The evacuees are currently being housed in the towns of Caceres and Moraleja.

Although around 330 people were involved in helping to organize the evacuation and in combatting the fire, the wind and the poor visibility overnight complicated their task and also made it impossible to use helicopters or aircraft overnight.

The aircraft were able to being work on Friday morning when they were joined by around 100 members of Spain's Military Emergency Unit (UME) to combat what is not the only forest fire currently causing problems in Spain.

A further fire close to the town of Lorca in southeast Spain has damaged 135 hectares of land and is being fought by 125 firemen and five helicopters. It is thought this fire was started by a lightning strike.

Finally two further fires are currently active close to the town of Cieza, also in southeast Spain.

These fires have started shortly after it was confirmed by the Spanish Meteorological Agency (AEMET) that July had been the hottest on record with average daily temperatures 2.5 degree Celsius above the monthly average.

  Xinhua -

1 comment:

  1. The Spanish Meteorological Agency AEMET confirmed on Thursday that Spain experienced the hottest July since records began using the current system in 1980...

    AEMET's data probably comes as no surprise to the majority of Spaniards, who have sweltered through average combined day and night temperatures of 26.5 degrees centigrade, which is around 2.5 centigrade above the average.

    Last July's figures beats the previous hottest July, which was experienced in 2003, when the average temperature was 26.2 C and AEMET describes the month as "extremely hot."

    The data shows that daytime temperatures were on average 2.8C above the norm, while July's night temperatures were 2.2C higher than average, making it difficult for many to enjoy a good night's sleep.

    AEMET show that July actually saw Spain suffer from three distinct heatwaves with the highest temperatures experienced at the start of the month as Cordoba suffered 45.2C heat on July 6, while Zaragoza had to withstand temperatures of 44.5C on July 7, the same day the mercury reached 43C in the south-eastern city of Murcia as the south-east, center and the south of Spain suffered the highest temperatures.

    The only "good" news is that the month saw an "average" level of rainfall, but it does look as if there will be no relief for Spaniards hoping for a return of cooler weather in the near future as the agency predicts there is a 60 percent chance that the period between August and October will also be warmer than average.


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