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Sunday, March 3, 2024

Spain fights fires. “We are concerned that the wind will change direction and things will get complicated.”

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It has not been safe in the eastern regions of Spain for several days. The raging fires there have already destroyed thousands of hectares of land. On Sunday, extinguishing the fire became even more difficult as strong winds came in.

Forests in eastern Spain have been on fire for several days. Strong gusts of wind hit the region on Sunday, adding to fears of the fire spreading faster. The regional authorities said that the fire has already destroyed over four thousand hectares of forest. 1.7 thousand people had to flee from the raging fires. inhabitants of Valencia and Aragon.

– Wind is the worst thing that can happen during fires. This morning they seemed to be suppressed, but the flames reappeared. We are worried that the wind will change direction and things will get complicated. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen,” said Antonio Devesa, a resident of the region.

They may lose their source of income

The concerns of residents also concern another aspect. There is a risk that the flames will destroy the jobs of local communities that depend primarily on tourism.

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– People here live from cycling, hiking and gastronomy. If it burns down, people will have little to live on, said another resident, Jorge Grausell.

More than 500 firefighters are battling the flames. They are supported from the air by planes and helicopters. The services warn not to approach the dangerous area. Some of the evacuated people had already received permission to return home.

Dry winter

For many regions of southern Europe, the winter turned out to be exceptionally mild and extremely dry. This greatly affected the condition of the soil, which is why there is a fear that the next few months will bring even bigger fires there than last year.

According to the European Commission, about 785,000 hectares of land were destroyed in the last year’s fire season, i.e. almost twice as much as the long-term average would indicate. As many as 307,000 of this only burned in Spain itself.

Main photo source: Reuters

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