Explosions at a WWII bomb disposal site ignited a blaze in one of Berlin’s biggest city forests.A large fire has broken out in one of Berlin’s largest city forests, triggered by several explosions at a bomb disposal site inside the forest on one of the hottest days of the year so far.
More than 100 firefighters were battling the blaze that has spread across 1.5 hectares (about 3.7 acres) in the German capital’s Grunewald forest on Thursday, the Berlin fire department and a German news agency reported.
The fire was spreading quickly and massive explosions could be heard from a site within the forest where old ammunition from World War II, fireworks and explosive ordnance are stored and controlled explosions are carried out.
“The situation is dangerous,” Thomas Kirstein from the Berlin fire department told reporters.
“The fire is not under control, the forest is burning uncontrollably.”
Kirstein said it was not clear what had triggered the first explosions at the ammunition dump earlier on Thursday.
He called on residents to stay away from the forest.
Authorities in Berlin frequently carry out bomb disposal operations due to explosive ordnance still being discovered from World War II.
Due to the danger from flying debris and the threat of further explosions, the fire department said it had not yet begun to systematically extinguish the forest fire as emergency services had to keep a distance of one kilometre (more than half a mile) from the flames.
Firefighters deployed to the area were dousing the forest outside the exclusion …