Greece Evacuates Hospital as Wildfire Threatens City of Patra

By | July 9, 2024

Greek authorities evacuated a hospital after a wildfire broke out in Patra, the country’s third-biggest city.

Firefighters, assisted by planes and helicopters, safely evacuated a hospital and a nursing home, state-run ERT TV reported. The fire destroyed cars and damaged properties, according to TV footage, before being largely contained.

Greece has seen hundreds of wildfires over the past month amid searing heat, strong winds and dry conditions. Wildfires have been a risk in Greece since the 1980s, but global warming is turbo-charging the threat they pose.

Firefighters work to extinguish a wildfire near the town of Stamata, on June 30. Photographer: Nick Paleologos/Bloomberg

The country recorded its hottest June day last month, while temperatures are forecast to top 40C in many parts of Greece over the coming 10 days. Almost half the nation will be on high or very high alert for wildfires on Wednesday.

Wildfires have erupted near the capital Athens, but also on islands such as Crete and Kos, which attract hundreds of thousands of tourists. Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis has warned that this summer will be particularly dangerous for wildfires.

Elsewhere in the Mediterranean, large parts of Sicily will also face extreme wildfire risk this weekend as temperatures soar in Italy. Fires are also burning in Albania and Bulgaria is threatened, according to the Copernicus Emergency Management Service.

Today’s #EFFIS Fire Danger Forecast for the Eastern #Mediterranean shows
⚫️“Very Extreme Danger” levels in areas of the #Peloponnese region, #Crete, Central Greece (including #Athens), and the Aegean Islands 🇬🇷, as well as in Central Anatolia 🇹🇷
More at:
— Copernicus EMS (@CopernicusEMS) July 8, 2024

Photograph: Firefighters work to extinguish a wildfire near the town of Stamata, on June 30, 2024. Photo credit: Nick Paleologos/Bloomberg

Topics Catastrophe Natural Disasters Wildfire

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