IN tight military formation, a legion of sea-planes battle the biggest fire of the summer in southern Spain.

The tune from Dambusters would be appropriate as they glide down to scoop up thousands of litres of water ready to drop on the massive two-day fire that has destroyed up to 4,000 hectares of virgin forest inland from the Costa del Sol.

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Image: Smoke rising above Selwo last night – Jon Clarke

In total, two giant CL-415 sea-planes were joined by over 20 other aircraft and helicopters to try and finally extinguish the massive fire in the hills above Estepona.

Each run of the CL-415s scoops up around 5,500 litres, which can then be aimed tactically as the fire advances.

The planes come from the ACO-8 team, based in Sevilla, while the other three came from other parts of Andalucia, one from Almeria.

These remarkable videos were taken by Olive Press reader Louise Mossman on Sonora beach, between Estepona and Benahavis today.

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Heavy winds hampered the work late on Thursday afternoon as the fire spread towards Benahavis and inland Estepona, around the Selwo area.

In total, 1000 people were evacuated from their homes, some 80 people in Benahavis, in the Monte Mayor alto area, where Spain’s most expensive urbanisation Zagaleta is based.

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