Abu Dhabi


New York

Mon, 16 Dec 2019 02:57 GMT

Firefighters Battle Gran Canaria Blaze


7Dnews London

Tue, 13 Aug 2019 09:31 GMT

Spanish firefighters said on Monday August 12th, that they hope to control the wildfire that broke out on the holiday island of Gran Canaria, reported AFP.

"We expect that during the day we will gradually control the front that is still active," Angel Victor Torres, the president of the regional government of the Canary Islands, a Spanish archipelago in the Atlantic off the northwest coast of Africa, told a news conference.

"This will be a difficult job because we are fighting against the wind and the lack of water and rain," he added.

250 firefighters and soldiers are battling the fire that broke out on Saturday in the western municipality of Artenara near the provincial capital of Las Palmas.

It took thirteen water bomber planes and helicopters to contain the raging fire after it had affected around 1.500 hectares of land, according to a local emergency service.

Around 1,000 residents were evacuated over the weekend due to the threat from the flames, but many were allowed to return to their homes on Monday. No one has been injured in the fire.

Police said they had detained a man on Saturday who is suspected of having started the fire by using welding equipment. 

Officials said the mountainous landscape of the volcanic island, a part of which was declared a Unesco world heritage site in July, had complicated the fight against the blaze which was now burning with less intensity.

Temperatures are forecast to rise in the coming days in Gran Canaria, the second most populated of the Canary Islands, which will make it "more difficult to completely extinguish the fire," Torres said.