19 Aug, 2019 @ 13:35
1 min read

Wildfires in Spain’s Gran Canaria declared ‘unstoppable’ as 8,000 evacuated

INFERNO: Wildfires in Gran Canaria have destroyed more than 6,000 hectares of land

AROUND 8,000 people have been evacuated from their homes as wildfires continue to ravage Gran Canaria.

A total of ten planes and helicopters and 700 firefighters, of which 200 are from the military, have been dispatched to tackle the inferno.

The blazes, which began on Saturday, have been described as ‘unstoppable’ by emergency crews.

Over 6,000 hectares of land have been destroyed, as experts claimed that a combination of high temperatures, strong winds and low humidity was allowing the fires to spread.

VIEW FROM SPACE: Satellite images show huge trails of smoke billowing from the island

“We are facing a wildfire that continues without being contained, or controlled,” said Canary Islands President Angel Victor Torres.

“Our priority is the safety of people.”

The fires, which started near the town of Tejeda have also spread to the provinces of Valleseco, Moya, Galdar, Agaete, San Mateo and Artenara.

More than 800,000 litres of water have so far been dumped on the affected areas, while at least 11 roads are believed to have been closed.

A Gran Canaria fire brigade statement read: “We are overwhelmed by the situation.

“We continue working and fighting for our island.”

One witness, Carla Rodriguez, described the fires to Sky News as, ‘one of the most painful images I’ve seen in my life’.

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