With wildfires burning in 10 U.S. states – including the 390 square mile Lodgepole fire in Montana – we are also following wildfires that have erupted across the Mediterranean region of Europe earlier this week. Our thoughts are with all those effect, both here and abroad.
Fires along the French southern coast and on the Mediterranean island of Corsica have forced over 10,000 to evacuate. Many have slept on beaches to escape fires that have burned over 15 square miles. The fires are burning as hot, dry and windy weather bake the region.
In an article by the BBC, a firefighter explained that faced with multiple fires, “"The situation is not under control because we don't have enough resources.”
The reality of this statement reminds me that fire departments are not the only ones with a role to play in wildfire risk reduction. As any fire service will be overwhelmed by the scale of such fires, steps that residents can take to reduce fire threat around their homes will create a safer environment for firefighters and help them better focus their response. Learn more about what you can do to prepare for wildfire in your area.
Thankfully, no fatalities have been reported thus far, though many, including responders, have been taken to hospitals with smoke inhalation.
Additional fires are burning across the Mediterranean region in Portugal, Italy, and along the Adriatic coast in Montenegro and Croatia. Another article from the BBC has several videos from those fires.
Photo Credit: BBC News, France appeal over 'virulent' Riviera and Corsica fires 25July17, image pulled 26July17