Tue, 17 Sep 2019

8,000 People Evacuated as Wildfire Sweeps Spain's Canary Islands

Voice of America
19 Aug 2019, 23:05 GMT+10

Authorities on Spain's Canary Islands have confirmed the evacuation of more than 8,000 people Sunday and Monday as a massive wildfire swept across Gran Canaria.

No fatalities have been reported, so far, but the fire is not yet under control.

Canary Islands President Angel Victor Torres said 1,100 firefighters are battling to contain the flames, adding that 14 water-dropping aircraft are joining the battle against blaze.

Extreme weather conditions with strong winds and high temperatures and making the mission difficult.

The wildfire started Saturday close to the town of Tejeda and spread to the mountainous Cruz de Tejeda, a region that attracts large numbers of tourists for its breathtaking views.

More than 3,400 hectares were reported burned and 11 roads closed on Gran Canaria, the second most populous island of Canary Islands in the Atlantic off the northwest coast of Africa.

More than 13 million foreign visitors vacationed on the Canary Islands last year, over half of them from Britain and Germany.

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