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Climate Change

October 5, 2023 5:01 PM IST

Thousands evacuated on Spain’s Tenerife as summer wildfire re-ignites

summer wildfire | Canary Islands | Mount Teide volcano | Europe | Spain | wildfire | Tenerife

Authorities on the Spanish island of Tenerife evacuated some 3,000 people from their homes overnight as a wildfire sparked by high temperatures and strong winds raged in a forested area already ravaged by fire in August.

Emergency services said on October 5 on social media platform X, they had requested assistance from the army’s Military Emergency Unit, citing the blaze, which ignited on Wednesday, as a high level emergency.

August’s wildfire burned for days, destroying some 15,000 hectares (37,000 acres) of woodland within the national park surrounding the Mount Teide volcano, Spain’s highest peak. Thousands were also evacuated then, with most returning to their homes.

The Canary Islands regional leader, Fernando Clavijo, told a business event in Madrid on Thursday the August fire had been brought under control but never completely extinguished, with embers still burning in the forest.

He said firefighting efforts overnight had “gone well”.

“There is less fuel (for the fire), so it shouldn’t get out of hand,” Clavijo said, referring to the already scorched terrain.

The island, in the Atlantic off Africa’s northwestern coast, is on alert for high temperatures that are expected to reach 39 degrees Celsius (102.2 degrees Fahrenheit) throughout Thursday.

(Inputs from Reuters)

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