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Greece, fires in Kos. A Polish tourist's account: we were told to flee the hotel

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We have been hearing about fires in the centre of Kos all day, but in the evening they started to threaten hotels in the south of the island – Ms. Magda, who is on the Greek island, told Kontakt24. She described the evacuation of tourists from the hotel due to the potential threat. – There is total chaos, police and soldiers are directing the traffic of buses and private cars, handing out drinking water – she said. In the last 24 hours alone, 52 fires have broken out in Greece, and some of them have still not been brought under control.

Recently Greece is struggling with fires. The fight against the elements is regularly hampered by high temperatures and strong winds. On Monday, a fire broke out on the island of Kos, among other places. There, over 100 firefighters fought the fire, as well as six planes and two helicopters. By evening, the situation had been partially brought under control, although the fire was still burning in some areas.

>> Fires in Greece. “Biblical disaster” on one of the islands <<

Evacuation of tourists. “There is total chaos, police and soldiers are directing traffic”

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Mrs. Magda, who is on vacation on the island of Kos, informed the editorial office of Kontakt24 about the evacuation of tourists from the hotel. – We heard about fires in the center of Kos all day, but in the evening they started to threaten hotels in the south of the island – she said.

– As tourists, we have not received any information. An hour ago, we were suddenly evacuated from the hotel by buses to a school at the airport. There is total chaos, police and soldiers are directing the traffic of buses and private cars, handing out drinking water. No one has information about what will happen next, the travel agency is not responding – she reported. She said that the evacuees are currently in the school playground.

– We weren't sure all day whether there would be an evacuation. We sat down to dinner when the alarms started ringing. We were told to take only the most necessary things and run. We were dropped off near the airport – she continued.

According to the information she provided, “planes are not flying and the fire is still being extinguished.” – We have no information whether we will be able to fly out. I was supposed to be flying back tomorrow – she added.

Evacuation of tourists to KosMagda/Contact 24

More than 50 fires in the last 24 hours

Emergency services also issued an evacuation order for people in the Metohi area in western Chios on Monday morning, urging everyone to go to a nearby beach. Meanwhile, firefighters began battling the blaze, which continued into the evening. More than 140 firefighters, eight firefighting teams, seven water planes and three helicopters were involved in the operation.

Fire brigade spokesman Vasilis Vatrakoyanis said two firefighters were slightly injured. “The situation in Chios remains difficult and all civil protection forces will do their utmost to contain it,” he said.

Vatrakoyanis said a total of 52 fires had broken out in Greece in the past 24 hours, 44 of which had been brought under control at an early stage. Authorities were still battling eight fires as of Monday evening.

Greece, fire near AthensPAP/EPA/KOSTAS TSIRONIS

Prime Minister warns of “particularly dangerous” time

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis stressed at Monday's cabinet meeting that “we had an exceptionally difficult June in terms of weather conditions, with high levels of drought and unusually strong winds for this part of the season.” In his opinion, this summer “is expected to be particularly dangerous” due to the fires.

– We are entering a difficult fire season and it will certainly not be possible to effectively fight fires without the help of society, especially in the field of prevention – Mitsotakis noted.

Last year, more than 20 people died in fires in Greece.

Author:acre, amn/adso

Main image source: Magda, Mariusz, Iza/Kontakt24



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