5:25 PM, August 1, 2021
Greece is still suffering from a permanent heat wave. In addition, many fires broke out due to drought. On Sunday, state television reported that at least 16 people for respiratory problems were treated in hospitals in the Peloponnese peninsula. Several houses were destroyed in the area of the small town of Aegion. The fires can be contained on Sunday morning. The Civil Defense warned of the danger of a major fire outbreak due to drought.
Meanwhile, the “historic heat wave” continues – as many meteorologists call it. After thermometers showed values as high as 43 degrees in the past few days, temperatures were expected to reach around 45 degrees in some places on Sunday. The Greek Met Office announced on Sunday that there should be a new event on Monday and Tuesday. The bad thing is that it stays hot even at night, especially in urban areas, where temperatures are over 30 degrees.
Cities have opened air-conditioned halls for residents who do not have air conditioning at home. The Labor Department said outdoor work should be reduced as much as possible. Humane societies have called on residents to provide water to stray animals in shaded areas and to refill water bowls over and over again. It is unclear when the heat will subside. Some meteorologists fear that this dangerous situation could last for up to two weeks.
Also in Turkey, thousands of emergency services battled dangerous wildfires for the fifth day in a row. On Sunday night, several villages in the Bodrum holiday district were evacuated, Mayor Ahmet Aras said. Among other things, people were transported to safety by boat across the sea. From an eastern suburb of Bodrum, 100 Russian tourists were taken to safety on Saturday evening, the Russian Consulate General in Antalya announced on Facebook. They were moved to new hotels and were out of danger.
Turkey has been battling its worst forest fires in years since Wednesday. According to Forestry Minister Bekir Bakdemirli, nine out of more than 100 fires were still active on Saturday night. There were active sources of fire in the provinces of Antalya and Mugla in southern and western Turkey. Strong winds made it difficult to put out the fire.
According to official information, the fires have so far killed at least eight people – seven people died in Antalya and one in Marmaris. Hundreds were injured.
On Saturday evening, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan visited the affected areas and reassured the victims of the rapid assistance. He pointed out that the number of firefighters rose to 16, with the support of Russia, Iran and Ukraine. The Turkish government has been under fire for days because the country has many helicopters but not its own firefighting aircraft in operation. According to Erdogan, there are also 45 firefighting helicopters, drones and thousands of emergency services at work.
Erdogan said children caused a fire in Marmaris. Investigations into the causes of other fires will continue, and arson has not been ruled out. Turkey is also currently experiencing a heat wave. Temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius are also expected in the coming days in the affected areas.
Severe fires continued to burn in southern Italy. While several parts of Sicily were on fire, the Italian government decided to send additional troops to the island to put out the fires. The government decided on Sunday that firefighting teams from different regions of Italy should actively support their colleagues in Sicily.
Intense fires broke out in the region of Catania, Palermo and Enna. Canader and helicopter are constantly used against fire. Fires also broke out in the Adriatic region of Puglia. A fire destroyed 50 hectares of reeds, olive groves and reeds in Foggia province. The flames were fueled by strong winds. Several firefighting teams and civil defense units were present at the site.
The fire has been burning for days, especially in southern Italy and the big islands. In addition to Sicily, Western Sardinia is also particularly affected. The forests and houses there burned. Rescue workers had to bring people to safety. Drought, heat and strong winds continue to spread fires.
Now, at all times, the Etna volcano on the island of Sicily creates a natural landscape with lava and smoke flows. The eruption began on Saturday evening and continued into Sunday night, according to the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (INGV) in Catania at the foot of the volcano. Lava and ash were fired from the crater on the southeast side of the mountain, which is more than 3,300 meters high. When measured at sea level, the smoke rose up to five kilometers into the night sky.
Bulgaria has also been plagued by a second heat wave this summer for several days. Across much of the country, the second-highest warning level was in orange for temperatures above 40 degrees on Sunday. In the capital, Sofia, it was stiflingly hot by noon. A large fire broke out near Hascow in the south in an inaccessible area with thickets and deciduous shrubs. The fire department warned that the fire was under control on Sunday, but it could spread quickly again due to the drought. The heat wave is expected to continue in the Balkans next week.
Bathing resorts on the Black Sea offered some refreshment with pleasant temperatures of just over 30 degrees, media in Sofia reported. However, the sea water has been very warm at around 26 degrees for several days.
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