Bulgaria–– The wildfire that erupted in southern Bulgaria in the Rila Mountain is continuing to engulf the pine forests for the fifth consecutive day.
The situation is reported as extremely serious despite the ongoing effort of hundreds of firemen, forest rangers, military servicemen, and volunteers. The two MI-17 helicopters from the Krumovo Air Base, which helped to halt the spread of the flames Sunday, will resume work on Monday.
Volunteers will not be allowed Monday and the extinguishing will be only in the hands of professionals.
Over 1 500 decares of vegetation have been affected. The wind is further worsening the situation, which was monitored overnight by a new team of 20 people on duty.
The fire started on August 23 at an altitude of 2 300 meters and a very difficult to access terrain, right above the historical Rila monastery. The monastery is not in danger, according to authorities.
There are 84 active wildfires in the country, the Interior Ministry’s press office reports.
The large number of blazes in Bulgaria is attributed to the summer heat and draught, and to human recklessness.