Fires in South-West France spiral out of control

(EurActiv, 18 Jul 2022) Eleven thousand hectares of forest have burned down, and 16,000 people have been evacuated due to two fires in Gironde, in La-Teste-De-Buch and Landiras, the South-West of France, that have been raging since Tuesday.

“The situation remains very unfavourable,” said the prefecture of Gironde on Sunday afternoon. One of the reasons is swirling winds, according to the mayor of Biganos, a nearby town. “It’s a real octopus. There’s not necessarily one head of fire. There are several heads of fire,” he explained to local radio France Bleu Gironde. At the moment, no one has been killed, but many holidaymakers had to leave the campsites of Gironde.

“We are mobilised” and “we will continue to hold,” said President Emmanuel Macron on Friday  after meeting the heads of the Operational Centre for Crisis Management (Cogic) with Interior Minister, Gerald Darmanin.

The president also thanked Greece, Spain, and Italy. Thanks to the European Civil Protection Mechanism (ECPM), “which we have set up and to which we have contributed,” France has been able to “benefit from European solidarity,” he said. The three countries have made available fighting aircraft, which arrived Friday morning.

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EurActiv, 18 Jul 2022: Fires in South-West France spiral out of control