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Majorca fires force 700 to flee for safety

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Majorca fires force 700 to flee for safety
The situation is not yet under control in the municipality Calvía, where fire squads have been unable to gain access on foot. Photo: Jaime Reina/AFP
14:38 CEST+02:00
The Spanish island's worst forest fire in nearly 15 years has been raging out of control since it began on Friday, with authorities stating it can only be extinguished from the air.

Some 730 residents and tourists were evacuated from the Majorcan municipalities of Andratx, Estellencs and Calviá in the early hours of Saturday morning when the fires started spreading quickly along the wooded hills as a result of strong winds.

Although the island’s fire squad managed to control the fire around the municipality of Andraxt  on Sunday, the situation is not yet under control in Calvía, where fire squads have been unable to gain access on foot.

About 370 firefighters, members of Spain’s Civil Guard and the military emergency unit deployed 24 planes and helicopters to fight the flames on the west of the Mediterranean island.

So far, 1800 hectares in the Tramuntana mountain range, a World Heritage site, have been lost to the fires.

Spanish media sources are describing the blaze as the worst fire on the holiday island since the 1999.

Majorca's most devastating fire was in 1992, when almost 20 square kilometres were destroyed in the Arta area in the east of the island.

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