Status: 07/20/2022 5:45 p.m.
According to the government, the intense heat wave has killed at least 500 people in Spain. In Portugal, there were even more than 1,000. Rescuers continue to put out devastating forest fires across southern Europe.
In Spain more than 500 people died because of the heat wave. This was announced by Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and refers to data from a health institute on excess mortality.
According to preliminary data from the Spanish meteorological service, the heat wave with temperatures above 45 degrees from July 9 to 18 was the most intense that has been measured so far. The temperature deviated 4.2 degrees from the average temperature.
Due to the many days of extreme heat, forest fires in Spain also continued. In five regions, firefighters tried to put out the fires.
Portugal fire rolls
Also in Portugal there were hundreds of dead. As of July 18, 1,063 people had died from the current heat wave, health authority chief Graca Freitas said on Tuesday.
The devastating fires also continued in the country. Up to 12,000 hectares of land have been burned in the country’s biggest wildfire since Sunday, said Armando Silva, commander of civil protection in northern Portugal.
The meteorological service warned that 50 municipalities, particularly in the north and center of the country, could currently be invaded by fireworks. In the morning, there were 25 more or less large forest fires in different parts of the popular holiday country, which were fought by a total of 1,200 emergency services, according to civil protection.
Macron wants to meet the rescuers
On the Atlantic coast to the south France Firefighters have been battling two large forest fires for more than a week. The Gironde supervisory prefecture announced that a total of 20,600 hectares of land south of Bordeaux had already been burned. More than 36,000 people had to be evacuated.
Last night, however, the fire “only spread a little further”, according to the prefecture. The prefect Fabienne Buccio spoke of an appeasement of the situation. The “cooler weather” also contributed to this.
French President Emmanuel Macron wants to visit the affected areas with Interior Minister Gérard Darmanin and meet with rescuers, officials and volunteers.
Emergency services are fighting forest fires in many places in southern Europe
Tagesschau 4 p.m., 20.7.2022
Fires in Tuscany
In Italy In Tuscany, more than 100 firefighters are trying to contain a major forest fire near the city of Lucca. About 500 residents of the Massarosa municipality area were brought to safety, firefighters said.
Other fires have been reported in other parts of Tuscany. In Florence, according to the mayor, there was a fire in an uninhabited area on a green space. Residents of the Tuscan capital should keep their windows closed.
Firefighting at the border with Slovenia
Also at the border Slovenia extinguishing work continued due to a forest fire. According to firefighters, an area of the municipality of Doberdò south of Gorizia (Gorizia) was affected. Rescuers say the situation is improving.
Residents were asked not to leave their homes because of a cloud of smoke. The Fincantieri shipyard had to close its factory in the port town of Monfalcone, north of Trieste, which had 3,000 employees.
evacuations in Greece
The fire department of Greece was able to bring a forest fire near Athens that had been raging for two days under control. “At the moment, there is no active fire front. The fire has practically receded,” fire department spokesman Jiannis Artopios said. According to Civil Protection Minister Takis Theodorikakos, nearly 700 people had previously been sheltered from the flames.
Rescuers said 30 people, including three firefighters, needed medical attention for burns and breathing problems. Authorities have ordered the evacuation of at least 10 areas and a hospital.
At least 12 injured in a violent fire in Athens
Verena Schälter, ARD Athens, 20.7.2022 09:02