Home News Majorca forest fire forces 200 to flee

Majorca forest fire forces 200 to flee

Published on 21/08/2013

Around 200 people were forced to flee from a fire on the Spanish holiday island of Majorca on Wednesday, local authorities said, at similar blazes raged across Portugal.

About 450 hectares (1,100 acres) of forest were destroyed in the Majorca blaze, which was still out of control on the Mediterranean island although 130 people had been mobilised to try to put out the flames.

A spokesman for the local government said about 200 people and 50 homes had been evacuated in the area on the northeast of the island, which is known for its agro-tourism.

Spain is highly prone to forest fires in summer because of soaring temperatures, strong winds and dry vegetation.

Last year wildfires destroyed about 150,000 hectares of land from January to July, after one of the driest winters on record.

This year the winter was wetter and there have been fewer summer fires so far.

In Portugal, several hundred firefighters were tackling forest fires raging in the north and centre of the country, backed by two Spanish Canadair planes.

Portugal, grappling with a number of wildfires, has sought help from Spain and France.

Some 31,000 hectares have been lost to fire in Portugal this year.