fire contained but not yet under control and 1000 new preventive evacuations – Release

1,840 people have had to leave their homes urgently since Monday, the start of the blaze in Saumos. 1000 firefighters are mobilized, but the fire is still not under control.

The Gironde is still in the grip of the flames, and its population forced to move. Slowed down by the action of the firefighters and by a wind “loaded with humidity”, the fire which ravaged nearly 3,700 hectares of vegetation and forest in Saumos in Gironde, was “contained but not fixed” Wednesday evening, causing a new “preventive” evacuation of a thousand inhabitants in two sectors of the commune of Sainte-Hélène, announced the prefecture of the department. The fire that started Monday in Saumos, its neighboring town, is still not under control. More than 3,700 hectares were ravaged. For the moment, 1,840 inhabitants of these two cities have had to leave their homes urgently.

“Up to 1,000 firefighters” de Gironde and other French departments are mobilized to try to control the fire, indicates the prefecture in a press release. She specifies that seven of them were “very slightly injured”, but none were hospitalized. Air resources were also reinforced during the day: six Canadair – twice as much as Tuesday – three Dash and two rotating water bomber helicopters are used to contain and extinguish the flames. So far without success. “The weather conditions remain difficult, with the persistence of wind, heat and drought” emphasizes the prefecture. The Gironde was placed on orange forest fire vigilance and on orange yellow vigilance at midday.

The summer had already been marked by a historic drought in the department and devastating fires in July and August, in La Teste-de-Buch, on the edge of the Arcachon basin, and in Landiras, about forty kilometers to the south. from Bordeaux, in the heart of the Landes de Gascogne massif. 30,000 hectares thus went up in smoke.

This new conflagration comes as the Gironde is again facing high heat. Monday, the thermometer showed 37.5 degrees in Bordeaux. A new record: according to Météo France, the mercury had never risen so high in September since 1987.

Updated at 7:31 p.m. with the number of evacuees and the evolution of the fire.

Source: Libération by

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