Spain holiday warning: Wildfire rages out of control near popular destination Benidorm as unseasonable heatwave sweeps across country

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A wildfire is raging in the Alicante province, 10 miles north of popular holiday destination Benidorm, as an unseasonable heatwave sweeps across Spain

More than 200 firefighters in Spain battled a raging wildfire, the first that has been since this year. Firefighters kept up efforts against a forest fire burning in the Alicante province on Monday (15 April).

A video taken by Spain’s Unidad Militar de Emergencias (UME) shows crews at work as a helicopter drops water on the fire burning between Tarbena and Xalo. The fire broke out on Sunday (14 April) near Tarbena, 10 miles north of Benidorm, and had spread to 2,470 acres.

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According to local reports 180 people were forced to evacuate. The wildfire comes as Spain has experienced unseasonal high temperatures for April since last Friday (12 April) with many places marking 10C (18F) higher than normal for the season.

A wildfire is raging in the Alicante province, 10 miles north of popular holiday destination Benidorm, as an unseasonable heatwave sweeps across Spain. (Photo: AFP via Getty Images)A wildfire is raging in the Alicante province, 10 miles north of popular holiday destination Benidorm, as an unseasonable heatwave sweeps across Spain. (Photo: AFP via Getty Images)
A wildfire is raging in the Alicante province, 10 miles north of popular holiday destination Benidorm, as an unseasonable heatwave sweeps across Spain. (Photo: AFP via Getty Images) | AFP via Getty Images

As fire crews battled the blaze overnight on Sunday the humid weather and excess of vegetation only served as a “tinderbox”. The regional head of interior and justice, Elisa Nunez, has visited the field operation centre where firefighters continue working.

The AEMET national weather service reported temperatures of 30C across the country, including as far north as the Pyrenees. Temperatures in Spain are expected to rise sharply between Monday and Wednesday this week, forecasting to reach 34C in parts of Malaga province. Spain's state weather agency Aemet issued a warning on its official X account, formerly Twitter, saying: "Temperatures will be significantly above normal over the next few days across practically all of Andalucía."

Samuel Biener, researcher and editor of the Meteored weather portal, told Sur in English that Spain had been immersed in a 'thermal roller coaster' in the first fortnight of April. He said: "In just a few hours we have gone from cool to summer-like heat, not forgetting the storms and haze. In the last few hours we have seen more typical summer-like temperatures in several regions with record highs in some cases.”

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Last year saw intense forest fires burning across Europe. In July, thousands of tourists were forced to flee Rhodes while Turkey, Italy, Cyprus, Algeria and Tunisia were also left devastated by wildfires throughout the summer.

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