Where are the fires in France? Location of forest fire in August 2022 including Gironde as thousands evacuated
The same region that was ravaged by wildfires last month has been struck by flames once again
More than 1,000 firefighters are struggling to contain a massive wildfire which has burned a large area of pine forest in south-west France – in a region already ravaged by flames last month.
The Gironde region was hit hard by wildfires in July, and now the fires have sparked up again. The fire, which began in the Landiras area in July, was reignited late on Tuesday amid a harsh drought and soaring temperatures.
Local authorities said more than 26 square miles have burned since Tuesday in the Gironde region and neighbouring Landes as France, like other European countries, swelters through a hot and dry summer.
Temperatures are expected to reach 40C on Thursday in the region.
What’s happening in France?
The huge wildfire in the Gironde region has raged for two days near the commune of Landiras, roughly 19 miles south-east of Bordeaux.
The blaze has forced the evacuation of about 10,000 people, has destroyed at least 16 houses and has burned up more than 37,000 acres of pine forest.
Firefighters have been urgently redeployed from other regions in order to help the ongoing efforts to tackle the fire. They are also being helped by a specialist aircraft that has been dropping water and flame retardant.
French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted: “Germany, Greece, Poland, and in the next few hours Romania and Austria: our partners are coming to the aid of France in the face of the fires. Thanks to them. European solidarity is at work!”
In a followup tweet, Macron added: “As in July, Italy remainsin solidarity with France. Several Canadairs arrive to support the French and European firefighters mobilised on our terriroty.”
Photographs released by firefighters showed flames raging through pine forests overnight, sending clouds of smoke in the air and illuminating the sky with intense orange light.
Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne and interior minister Gerald Darmanin visited the evacuated small town of Hostens on Thursday to meet firefighters, rescuers, local officials and volunteers.
Mr Darmanin said nine aircraft and two helicopters have been mobilised to fight the blaze.
Speaking to France’s RTL Radio, firefighter representative Gregory Allione said: “It’s an ogre, it’s a monster.”
French firefighter Jérôme Jean told BFMTV news: “It’s the first time we’ve seen a fire like this.”
What happened in July?
The Gironde region was hit last month by major wildfires that forced the evacuation of more than 39,000 people, including residents and tourists.
France is this week in the midst of its fourth heat wave of the year as the country faces what the government warned is its worst drought on record.