Europe is on fire as the heatwave continues. Temperatures have soared over 100 degrees, something we in the South are quite used to.
Bonedry conditions, sweltering heat, low humidity, and high winds (sounds like Oklahoma!) make fires easy to start and spread. It doesn’t have to start with a cigarette or match. Anything that can cause a spark can cause a wildfire.
British authorities put England in a “national emergency” state due to the heatwave and wildfires:
The heat caused travel disruption, with Network Rail warning passengers against using the railway.
Those hoping to travel north from Euston and King’s Cross were told: “Do not come to the station.” Train companies cancelled all services because of “extreme heat causing multiple incidents across the network”.
On the roads, the A14 dual carriageway in Cambridgeshire was left looking like a “skatepark” after it warped in the heat, police said.
Parents were told to urgently collect children in the middle of the day as classrooms became unbearably hot, despite the Prime Minister calling on schools to stay open.
An ambulance control centre shut down after its water supply ran dry, while others across the country reported an increase in calls for fainting and heat exposure.
There were 90,592 visits to the heat exhaustion and heatstroke section of the NHS website – equivalent to around 63 visits every minute – on Monday as temperatures soared.
At least 13 people have died in open water since the start of the heatwave, including at least four children under 17.
Authorities in France arrested a man on suspicion of arson regarding a huge wildfire in the Goronde region:
In southwestern France, the wine-growing Gironde region saw its biggest wildfires in over 30 years and authorities said a man had been detained on suspicion of arson.
The fires have spread across 19,300 hectares (about 75 square miles) in the countryside surrounding Bordeaux since July 12, forcing 34,000 people to evacuate their homes.
About 2,000 firefighters, supported by eight water-bomber aircraft, were battling the blazes.
Portugal’s health authority said that the country has had “1,063 excess deaths due to the heatwave.” Thankfully the country has contained its wildfires.
A fire raged on in Massarosa, located in Italy’s Lucca province:
Videos circulating online show the extent of the fire in Italy’s Massarosa which has forced fifty people to be evacuated from their homes (forty of them during the night).
Regional President Eugenio Giani said that ‘this is a terrible fire’, about 100 hectares have been burnt.
“We are worried about the right front because of the wind that is rising,” he said.
“Over one hundred hectares of woodland gone up in smoke on the hills of Massarosa,” one news site in Italy tweeted.
“Closed the link road connecting the A11 with the E80 between Lucca and Viareggio. At work 4 Canadair, 4 helicopters and 60 units of the @vigilidelfuoco. The front of fire is powered by the strong mistral wind.”
Un #incendio terribile quello scoppiato a #Massarosa.
La nostra sala regionale è pienamente operativa in azione con 4 elicotteri, 2 canadair, decine di squadre AIB e Vigili del Fuoco da tutta la #Toscana, la stima delle fiamme è circa al momento circa 80 ettari. pic.twitter.com/HTzmCZEYqn
— Eugenio Giani (@EugenioGiani) July 19, 2022
Firefighters in France, Spain, Greece and the UK battled to contain massive wildfires, while Portugal reported more than 1,000 heatwave-related deaths https://t.co/yQ5vXsSyGX pic.twitter.com/0xrCaK51x1
— Reuters (@Reuters) July 20, 2022
WATCH: Large wildfire breaks out near Athens, destroying an unknown number of homes pic.twitter.com/HrG9aB56HI
— BNO News (@BNONews) July 19, 2022
WATCH: Large wildfire breaks out along highway in Dartford, east of London; major incident declared pic.twitter.com/uSGZSbs9kD
— BNO News (@BNONews) July 19, 2022
Yet another wildfire, this time in Ravensden, Bedfordshire.
🎥Bernice Hepworth-Lloyd pic.twitter.com/XugmrbzJmS
— Met4Cast (@Met4CastUK) July 19, 2022
— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) July 19, 2022
— AFP News Agency (@AFP) July 16, 2022
More than 2,000 firefighters from around France were battling raging wildfires on Tuesday in the country’s southwest. The flames have forced over 37,000 people to evacuate in the past week and investigators suspect that one fire was set intentionally. https://t.co/CDwd0FL9Fc pic.twitter.com/OReDdgjegA
— The New York Times (@nytimes) July 19, 2022
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