Spain — An extreme wildfire, caused by a car accident on Tuesday 5 August 2008, consumed more than 3000 hectares of forests and wildlands within only 3 hours near Zaragoza, Spain. The fire started as a topography driven fire, but changed suddenly to eruptive fire behaviour when cool and moist coastal winds from the south along the Ebro Valley hit hot and dry air masses from the interior of Spain. This resulted in the extremely rapid spread pattern of a storm driven fire with long spotting distances. A 4-person GFMC crew is involved in the suppression activities within a GRAF unit providing assistance for tactic development and fire analysis to the authorities of Aragon. By the time the unit arrived at the fire the location of the head fires was still unknown. The unit secured the southern flank of the fire as a critical point by blacking out operations during the last night (demob at 04:00h local time this morning). The southern flank had the biggest potential for further spread into very difficult terrain under extreme fire weather conditions.
For details see the latest report published by El Pais: