At least two Greek villages and a children’s summer camp in Lakonia, Peloponnese, were evacuated due to a wildfire that broke out around 3:45 am on Friday, July 17. Authorities have rushed to the scene but the fire is spreading quickly due to the winds, measuring 8 on the Beaufort scale.
The fire has caused damage to the nearby forest and several houses located in the area, while it is spreading quickly towards Neapoli, Peloponnese.
The Greek Fire Department has arrived at the scene with 35 firetrucks and 120 firemen who are fighting tirelessly to put out the flames. Furthermore, a few hours later, with the first light of the day, two aircrafts joined the struggle to control the fiery front.
Monemvassia Mayor Iraklis Trichilis noted that the situation is extremely difficult due to the very strong winds. “The fire has already passed through two villages, burning homes,” he added, “it is hellish right now, there are hundreds of pockets of fire.”
Fire department spokesman Nikos Tsongas warned there could be further damage to property. “The winds are strong and are not expected to weaken. There could be further damage,” he said.
Firefighting aircraft made emergency landing
One of the firefighting aircrafts had to make an emergency landing at the fiery front, due to technical problems that have not yet been officially announced. The incident occurred while the plane was flying over the Greek village Faraklo, dropping water on the wildfire. According to the first reports, the pilots were not harmed.
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is currently at the National Defense Ministry in order to be informed on the situation.