Latest Headlines and Breaking News from Around the World
Fresh news
for 2023

Greek wildfires force residents and holidaymakers to evacuate

Greece Wildfires

Wildfires outside the Greek capital, Athens, continued to burn through forestry early Tuesday morning.

The blazes have forced thousands to flee seaside resorts, closed highways and gutted holiday homes following days of extreme heat. 

Authorities issued evacuation orders for at least six seaside communities as two major fires edged closer to summer resort towns and gusts of wind hit 70 km/h. 

Water-dumping aircraft were deployed early on Tuesday to help dozens of ground crews and mobile units battle three wildfires in the regions of Attica, Corinth and Viotia for a second day.

The biggest blaze appeared to be in Dervenohoria, a cluster of villages in Viotia, about 45km northwest of Athens but fires in the East Attica seaside resort of Saronida and outside Loutraki in Corinth were also active despite ongoing efforts to contain them.

Three volunteer firefighters in Saronida were hospitalised after sustaining eye injuries and officials say homes have been destroyed in both Saronida and Loutraki. 

Greater Athens and much of southern Greece were on the second highest level of alert for wildfires on Monday and Tuesday following a four-day heat wave which had eased over the weekend.  Temperatures are expected to soar again later in the week.

Residents and visitors in areas affected by the fires received mobile phone alerts from the Civil Protection Ministry. 

Loutraki Mayor Giorgos Gionis said municipal workers were also helping elderly and vulnerable people in the evacuations, adding that the operation had been impeded by mobile phone reception outages.

Posted on 18 Jul 2023 14:15 link