Firefighters battle two alarming fires in Olympia and Evia

Firefighters battle two alarming fires in Olympia and Evia

Dantesque landscape. Greek firefighters on Thursday, August 5th, continue to fight two alarming fires in Olympia and the island of Euboea in the west and east of the country. Large forces were deployed near the ancient village of Olympia to protect the archaeological site where the first Olympic Games were held in antiquity, to the west of the Peloponnese peninsula.

According to the firefighters, more than 170 firefighters, assisted by about fifty vehicles, 6 helicopters and hydroplanes, are fighting, with the help of reinforcements from the army.

A fire approaches ancient Olympia, Greece, August 4, 2021 (EUROKINISSI / AFP)

After he burned twenty houses, “The fire front is now heading towards the Lala area.”, which is a mountainous forest area, northeast of the ancient site, the governor said in an interview with the Greek news agency ANA. The ancient village of Olympia, which is usually crowded with tourists at this time of year, was evacuated, along with six other nearby towns the day before.

Dozens of villages are also surrounded by fire on the island of Evia, 200 kilometers from Athens. Hundreds of homes were burned as well as more than 25,000 hectares of pine forest, according to preliminary estimates. About 90 people were evacuated by sea on Wednesday from Rovis Beach, northwest of the island, by the Greek coast guard. According to the Afghan National Army, two additional villages were evacuated Thursday morning.

Mayors in two regions denounced the lack of resources. We urge the authorities to reinforce the air and ground forces so as not to risk human lives.”The mayor of Limni said about the Afghan National Army. “No air equipment has been deployed to put out the fire.”, the deputy mayor of Mantudio, accused. “At least 150 houses were burnt”He said on Sky TV.

Under the influence of an exceptional heat wave, with temperatures exceeding 40 degrees, Greece faced 118 fires in the past 24 hours, according to Deputy Civil Protection Minister Nikos Hardalias. “We are fighting a battle of the titans!”, did he say. “The hardest part is yet to come.”.

Under the European Union’s Civil Protection Mechanism, two firefighting planes from Cyprus and two planes from Sweden are set to provide support to Greece. Other fires were underway in Chalkidiki and southern Peloponnese. On the island of Rhodes, the disaster was brought under control on Wednesday.

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