Greek firefighters battle wildfire on holiday islands

Greek firefighters battle wildfire on holiday islands

30 July 2011

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Greece — Firefighters battled to contain wildfires that blazed out of control on the Greek holiday islands of Crete and Corfu Saturday, causing the evacuation of hundreds of residents.

The fire raged on several fronts near the village of Sahroutia in the southern prefecture of Rethymno.

The fire on the island of Crete began late Thursday and rapidly spread, threatening three other villages. High winds fanned the blazes and hampered firefighting efforts.

Three water-bombing helicopters and hundreds of firefighters from all over the island were involved in the operation to bring the fire under control.

Meanwhile dozens of firefighters, a water-bombing plane, a helicopter and eight trucks rushed to contain another forest fire which broke out on Saturday morning on the Ionian island of Corfu.

Firefighters managed to contain another fire in the area of Rotzali in the Ionian island of Kefalonia.

Greece is often hit by fires during the hot, dry summer months, leading to the destruction of thousands of acres of forest and entire villages in recent years.

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