The fires give a break in Spain, except in Galicia and Ávila

A forest firefighter, exhausted after fighting the fire in Orense. / Eph

More than half of the 10,000 evacuees have returned to their homes, the flames stop in León, Zamora and Salamanca and loosen in Zaragoza

Alfonso Torres

After more than a week in which tens of thousands of hectares of mountain and forest burned by the flames throughout Spain were counted daily, today, finally, there were few new fires of a relevant dimension and, instead, several of the superfires that have scorched the peninsula stabilized or began to be controlled. The fire, for the first time in two weeks, gave at least a slight respite.

That doesn't mean this summer from hell is over. Not much less. The flames continue to advance, especially through the forest lands of Galicia, where more than 30,000 hectares have been scorched in this heat wave alone, and continue their march in other fire monsters, such as the one that since last Saturday has burned the territory near Cebreros (Ávila), forcing the firefighting teams to give 100% of their forces.


Galicia has not experienced a similar emergency situation for a long time. The super fires in the regions of Valdeorras and O Courel, which since the weekend have spread panic for hundreds of kilometers and dozens of villages and towns in Orense and Lugo, further increased their dimensions, which already exceed 10,000 hectares of land. devastation each. The most recent fire in the Vilariño de Conso area is also very much alive, which has burned another 4,000 hectares of Monte Orensano.

A Civil Guard looks out this Thursday at one of the fires that are destroying the UNESCO World Geopark Montañas do Courel /


Cebreros (Avila)

The Cebreros area is doing somewhat better than in days past, which is not difficult. It has been possible to secure a perimeter in part of the 4,400 hectares burned by the flames, although it is far from being able to stabilize the superfire. Some 300 ground troops and 17 air assets were still fighting the flames today.

In the Avila town of Hoyo de Pinares, where the flames coming from Cebreros several nights ago put the town in check and forced more than 2,000 residents to leave their homes on the run.

A helicopter refreshes one of the burned areas in Cebreros. /


Ateca (Aragon)

In Aragon, the firefighting teams managed to stop the voracity of a fire that in just three days has devoured 14,000 hectares of the Calatayud region since its origin, in the municipality of Ateca. The spokesmen for the emergency device said that the evolution of the works was "favourable", but they used the term with all caution. The improvement allowed, for example, to reopen circulation on the A-2, between Medinaceli (Soria) and Contamina (Zaragoza), which was suspended for 30 hours due to smoke and the threat of flames.

Despite the progress in fighting these extreme fires, the proof that the danger was still high was that the authorities did not allow the return of the evacuees to their homes. Some 2,000 residents of six towns near Ateca remain refugees in the homes of friends and relatives or in public facilities since Monday or Tuesday.

A helicopter works to put out the fire on the outskirts of Moros (Zaragoza), /



The other side of the coin was the progressive stabilization, with hardly any flames, the phase prior to considering the fire controlled, which was experienced by the great monster of this plague of fires, the Losacio fire that devoured more than 20,000 hectares of Zamora since Sunday. . Thanks to advances in extinction, the last batch of 6,000 residents who had to evacuate up to 34 neighborhoods and towns in the last four days returned to 14 Zamorano towns.

Salamanca, Leon and Guadalajara

In a situation of similar stabilization, three other superfires entered, the one in Monsagro (Salamanca), which burned 9,000 hectares, the one in Montes de Valdueza, in Leon, with another 2,000 hectares devastated, and the one in Valdepeñas de la Sierra in Guadalajara (3,500 hectares burned). .

The Civil Guard arrests an arsonist in Valencia who caused fires when he returned from seeing his girlfriend in the next town

Several of these superfires had a human origin, including arsonists, such as the cigarette butt thrown on the lawn that burns Cebreros or the spark of an excavator that burns the province of Zaragoza. While this was happening, the Valencia Civil Guard arrested a 67-year-old man whom they consider responsible for starting at least four fires at the confluence of the towns of Alcásser and Picassent between June 26 and July 8. According to the investigations, the detainee caused the flames next to a walkway that connects both towns when he returned from one to the other after visiting his girlfriend for a few hours in the first one.

The Civil Guard also arrested in Hoyo de Manzanares (Madrid), thanks to citizen collaboration, another 39-year-old man when he was fleeing in his car after lighting two sources of forest fire next to the road in neighboring Colmenar Viejo.

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