Spain — The body of 96-year-old Severino Basalo Cid, a convicted serial arsonist, was found by fire-fighters at the point of origin of a forest fire that destroyed 0.01 hectares (0.025 acres) of chestnut tree woods near Viana do Bolo (Ourense) last Wednesday afternoon.
It appears that Cid’s fellow residents had prevented him from setting the fire after spotting him behaving suspiciously earlier in the day, but nobody noticed when he returned to the scene to complete his mission after lunch.
The blaze, which was reported shortly after 3pm, was extinguished by 5.45pm by four teams of ground-based fire-fighters supported from the air by one helicopter.
Cid’s funeral took place at Viana do Bolo cemetery at 8pm yesterday evening.
According to regional Environment ministry statistics, there were 32 forest fires active in Galicia yesterday – A Coruña (1), Lugo (5), Ourense (23) and Pontevedra (3) – which destroyed a total surface area of 72.87 hectares (180 acres).
The most serious destroyed 56 hectares (138 acres) of woods and scrubland near Ríos in Ourense province.