by Staff Writers
Vilaflor, Spain (AFP) July 17, 2012
Spanish authorities evacuated a town of 1,800 residents on the Canary Islands on Tuesday, after three days of firefighting efforts failed to prevent a raging wildfire from reaching it.
Residents were evacuating from the town of Vilaflor, south of the Teide national park that spans the centre of the Spanish island of Tenerife, as flames reached parts of the town.
Emergency services "are evacuating residents from Vilaflor due to the advance of the fire from the east," the regional government said in a statement Tuesday evening.
It said the 1,800 people of the village were leaving by road. Authorities provided buses for some 200 people who did not have their own vehicles.
Authorities had prepared a shelter for the evacuees in the nearby town of Granadilla, the statement added.
Authorities earlier said the fire had crept a few metres into the Teide park, a major tourist attraction on the archipelago off northwest Africa, as firefighters battled to keep the flames away from populated areas.
Some 800 firefighters were battling the blaze, which broke out Sunday and has spread with strong winds and high temperatures, regional authorities said.
More than 90 people were evacuated from other parts of the island on Monday, of whom 60 remained away from their homes before the latest evacuations.
The fire had affected an area of about 3,000 hectares, of which half had been burnt, a spokeswoman for the regional emergency services said.
Firefighters said they were using five helicopters and three water-bombing planes that arrived Tuesday from mainland Spain, but authorities later said the thick smoke at Vilaflor was hampering efforts.
Another four helicopters and 300 firefighters were working to put out a blaze on one of the neighbouring islands, La Palma, that has engulfed around 500 hectares and forced more than 150 evacuations.
The spokeswoman said this fire had been "stabilised" on Tuesday afternoon after 160 people were evacuated.
Spain has been hit particularly hard by forest fires this year after experiencing its driest winter in 70 years.
The worst fire ravaged 50,000 hectares in the eastern Spanish region of Valencia in July.
Forest and Wild Fires - News, Science and Technology
Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.
Forest fire rages near Tenerife tourist park
Tenerife, Spain (AFP) July 16, 2012
A forest fire raging on the Spanish island of Tenerife reached the edge of a major tourist park Monday, spewing thick smoke and red sparks. The fire broke out on Sunday, prompting emergency services to evacuate 90 villagers from their homes overnight, and has spread over 1,800 hectares (2,700 acres), the regional government said Monday. The wind-fanned fire reached the edge of the Teide ... read more
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|