Portugal wildfires: State of alert begins amid third heatwave

Posted on

By Alex Binley
BBC News

Every mobile phone in Portugal has been sent a text warning of the extreme risk of wildfires as the country braces for its third heatwave of the summer.
The country has entered a state of alert, with temperatures expected to reach 38C (100.4F) and strong winds predicted in the coming days.
The messages warned those in rural areas now to start any form of fires.
The government has also restricted access to forests and banned the use of machinery to avoid sparks.
The state of alert came into force at midnight on Sunday and will last until Tuesday.
Some 92,000 hectares of land have already burned this year, according to government estimates, with heatwaves and drought producing tinder-like conditions.
In the Serra da Estrela area alone, fires in recent weeks have destroyed more than 28,000 hectares – more than 25% of its total area.
On Saturday, fires in Ourém and Leiria, to the north of the capital Lisbon, were brought under control after they caused thousands of pounds of damage and disrupted trains for more than six hours on Friday.
In neighbouring Spain, a wildfire in the eastern province of Valencia is burning out of control and has become one of the country's biggest fires of the year. On Friday, as it entered its fifth day, 35 planes were sent to try and bring it under control.
Spain has been hit harder than any other European country by forest fires this year, according to the European Commission's Copernicus Earth observation program. This year, wildfires in Spain have burned four times more land than they did during the last decade.
Up to early August, 43 large wildfires — those affecting at least 500 hectares (1,235 acres) — were recorded in the Mediterranean country, while the average in previous years was 11.
The European Forest Fire Information System estimates Spain has seen 284,764 hectares (704,000 acres) burn this year — four times higher than the average since records began in 2006.
Drought on the Rhine: 'We have 30cm of water left'
Climate Check
Climate activists fill golf holes with cement
Daughter of Putin ally killed in Moscow blast
Somalia deadly hotel siege ends, officials say
Strike begins at UK's biggest container port
Demi Lovato is back, and this time she's angry
Greece promotes smaller islands over Mykonos and Corfu
Missing girl found after nine years describes ordeal
The new sound of dance music sweeping the world. Video
'Everything we get is through selling cannabis'
'I broke the world record with my last ever run' Video
Why one of the world's greatest composers was erased from history
Peace at a price in the Taliban’s heartlands
How much grain is being shipped from Ukraine?
Turkey's massive subterranean city
The language with no known origin
Why overthinkers struggle with remote work
© 2022 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read about our approach to external linking.

source

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.