France fights spreading wildfires as heat wave fries Europe

by | Jul 18, 2022 | Top Stories

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This photo provided by the fire brigade of the Gironde region (SDIS 33) shows firefighters fighting wildfire near Landiras, southwestern France, Sunday July 17, 2022.


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PARIS — France scrambled more water-bombing planes and hundreds more firefighters to combat spreading wildfires that were being fed Monday by hot swirling winds from a searing heat wave broiling much of Europe. With winds changing direction, authorities in southwestern France announced plans to evacuate more towns and move out 3,500 people at risk of finding themselves in the path of the raging flames. Three additional water-bombing planes were joining six others already making repeated runs over the flames and dense clouds of smoke, the Interior Ministry said Sunday night.

It said more than 200 reinforcements were also being added to the 1,500-strong force of firefighters battling night and day to contain the blazes through the Gironde region’s tinder-dry pine forests and sending burning embers into the air, further spreading the flames.

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