“You can hardly breathe”: People flee the flames – around 20,000 German vacationers on Rhodes

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A major fire is raging on the Greek island of Rhodes, and thousands of tourists are fleeing the flames. According to the travel association, around 20,000 German vacationers are staying on the Greek island. The most important information about the major fire on Rhodes in the ticker.

30,000 people brought to safety

10:05 p.m.: Around 30,000 people have been brought to safety on the Greek holiday island of Rhodes from a forest fire that has been raging for days. Regional governor George Hadjimarkos told TV channel Skai that evacuations had been complicated by road links cut off by the blaze. “The goal is to protect human life,” he said. In some cases, holidaymakers had to walk to safety because of the roads blocked by the fire.

Tourists and some locals were housed in gymnasiums, school buildings and hotel conference centers for the night. Tourists had been making their way to the beaches on foot since the evacuation alert was sounded early that morning. Video footage shows some walking with young children under the scorching sun. According to media reports, some of the holidaymakers who have now been evacuated had missed their flights from the island because the flames had cut off normal transport connections.

The great fire on Rhodes has been raging for five days. He had erupted on a mountain in the center of the island. Five helicopters and around 200 firefighters were deployed to fight the fire. Greece is currently suffering from an extreme heat wave. Temperatures of over 44 degrees were expected for this weekend. Numerous forest fires are currently raging in the country. According to the fire department, 46 new fires broke out within 24 hours.

German vacationer reports rescue at the last second

10 p.m.: Paul F. from Bielefeld is currently vacationing with his girlfriend in Rhodes. “Bild” he reports of her dramatic rescue from the forest fire: “We were saved from the fire at the last second. We’re all the way down south now, we were taken on a pickup truck.” The situation is relatively calm in the south and north of the island. “Fortunately we found accommodation here. They just threw out the tourists in a place called Gennady,” Paul F. continues.

The situation is “absolute chaos” because the entire island is busy with the fires. “There were no buses or taxis to get. They were all in action.

Around 20,000 German vacationers on Rhodes

9:43 p.m.: According to the German Travel Association, Germans are also affected by the evacuations in the south of the Greek holiday island of Rhodes due to a large forest fire. “There are currently around 20,000 German vacationers from tour operators on the island, only a small number are affected by the evacuations,” said a spokeswoman for the German Press Agency in Berlin on Saturday evening.

According to them, affected guests are also brought to safety by boat from the Greek civil protection. “Collection points are planned in the north of the island for the evacuees until the fires are extinguished. The top priority is the protection of life and limb,” said the spokeswoman.

According to her, tour operators want to contact their customers who are planning a trip to Rhodes in the next few days. You would then be informed whether the trip could take place.

A large forest fire got out of control on Rhodes on Saturday. The flames reached the coast south of the popular archaeological site of Lindos in the afternoon. There are dozens of hotels that are fully booked at this time of year. Thousands of people were brought to safety, according to state broadcasters.

Thousands of tourists flee a major fire in Rhodes

7:43 p.m.: According to media reports, thousands of people have already been brought to safety because of a major fire on the Greek holiday island of Rhodes. The state radio reported in a special on Saturday evening that 8,000 people had left the south of the island, which is popular with tourists, by land. The number could be even higher, it said.

A spokesman for the fire brigade had previously announced that 2,000 people had been brought to safety by boat from the coasts south of Lindos. How many people fled overland was not yet known from official sources on Saturday evening.

A large forest fire got out of control on Rhodes on Saturday. The flames reached the coast south of the popular archaeological site of Lindos in the afternoon. There are dozens of hotels that are fully booked at this time of year.

Severe heat wave and forest fires in southern Europe

5.45 p.m.: There is no end in sight to the heat wave in Greece. As the Meteorological Office announced on Saturday, values ​​of up to 45 degrees Celsius are expected in the south of the country on Sunday. In the central Greek city of Larisa, the thermometer showed 44 degrees early Saturday afternoon.

The Italian meteorologists are also expecting a new heat wave at the beginning of next week. Then peak temperatures of 47 to 48 degrees are possible between Sardinia and Sicily, the weather service Ilmeteo.it wrote on Saturday. The weather service of the Italian Air Force registered 40 degrees from Palermo, the capital of Sicily, early Saturday afternoon. In Rome it was 37 degrees. 41.8 degrees had already been measured there last Tuesday.

The forest fires that have been raging on Rhodes for three days got out of control on Saturday afternoon. According to the state broadcaster, hotels on the Kiotari coast, around 55 kilometers south of Rhodes town, are affected.

Force six winds blow in the Rhodes region. “The smoke is so heavy it’s hard to breathe. People will be taken to the small town of Gennadi, from where they will be accommodated in other hotels,” Konstantinos Traraslias, deputy mayor of Rhodes, told Athens news channel Skai.

Fires around Athens flare up again and again

In northern Greece, too, there were values ​​around 40 degrees in many places on Saturday. Even most of the Aegean islands have temperatures above 38 degrees. One of the leading Greek meteorologists, Konstantinos Lagouvardos, estimated on state television that “if things continue like this”, this heat wave could become the longest since measurements have been taken in Greece. In July 1987, a similar heat wave in Greece killed an estimated 1,300 people.

The fire brigade again warned of the great danger of forest fires. “We have even more difficult times ahead of us,” said a spokesman on Saturday on state television. The fires in the Athens area and on the Peloponnese peninsula have been brought under control. But they flare up again and again because everything has dried up, they said.

Meanwhile, hundreds of firefighters from Romania, Bulgaria, Poland, Slovakia and Malta have arrived in Greece to reinforce the fire brigade and are battling the flames. France, Italy, Turkey, Cyprus, Israel and Jordan are taking part in the extinguishing work with fire-fighting aircraft and helicopters, the Greek civil defense announced.

According to the meteorologists, the heat wave will continue with small fluctuations in the coming week. A new high is expected on Wednesday with temperatures around 46 degrees in southern Greece.


Source: https://www.focus.de/panorama/welt/hitzewelle-in-griechenland-und-italien-man-kann-kaum-atmen-rhodos-evakuiert-hotels-und-doerfer-wegen-braenden_id_199758059.html

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