OUR nightmare started at 1am when my parents jumped out of bed shouting about smoke in the house. We looked outside to see smoke and flames on a nearby mountain and discovered there had been a total power cut.

While terrified, I went outside  and managed to get some pictures before the smoke got so dense you couldn’t see the street or trees outside.

It was clear the fire was approaching Elviria at a very high speed so I ran home and warned my family and all my neighbours to evacuate as fast as possible.

There was lots of screaming and people fled as fast as they could, with flames of up to 20 metres now right outside.

At 2.30am police told us that it was even too dangerous to stay at the urbanisation entrance and to go down towards the coast. But I was afraid to lose our home and left the car and ran back uphill with my father to see what we could do.

As soon as we got back we worked out how to override our garden sprinklers to manual to shoot water across the gardens and make a barricade to the fire.

We then walked around the communal gardens working out ways to water down other plants and trees. With our water hose we managed to soak all our immediate neighbours gardens and when we saw that some palms were

starting to go up in flames we got two fire extinguishers and put them out that way.

It was exciting and terrifying in equal measures and we had to hide a couple of times when we saw police outside.

Eventually we had to give up  and flee as the smoke got so thick, but hopefully our effort went some way to saving our buildings, which mostly remained intact.”

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