Forest fire causes hundreds to be evacuated near Valencia

Forest fire causes hundreds to be evacuated near Valencia

23 April 2014

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Spain — A forest fire in the Autonomous Community of Valencia in the east of Spain has caused hundreds of people to be evacuated from their homes on Tuesday afternoon.

The fire, which began close to the town of Torrent, has spread out of control and the smoke has forced authorities to evacuate seven residencies for retired people in the area, as well as a residential zone.

The evacuees have been housed in a sports center and a school in the area, while a tent hospital has also been erected “in case it is needed,” according to the regional government.

A total of 13 aircraft and 14 fire engines helicopters have been working to extinguish the flames, while the Military emergency Unit (UME) are also helping combat the fire, the cause of which has still to be established.

Meanwhile people have been asked to keep the roads in the region as free of traffic as possible.

Spain is bracing itself for a summer of forest fires after a winter of high rainfall has stimulated the growth of verdant undergrowth which when dry will allow any the flames of any possible fire to become established and to spread rapidly.

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