Sunday Jul 01, 201202:22 AM GMT
Huge fires rage in Spain
A wildfire spreads around a road in Yatova, Spain on June 30, 2012.
A wildfire spreads around a road in Yatova, Spain on June 30, 2012.
Sun Jul 1, 2012 2:21AM
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Over a thousand firefighters have been called in to put out wildfires across eastern Spain, where blazes are raging in the Valencia and Catalonia regions.


The forest fire in Valencia has forced 700 people to evacuate their homes and indirectly caused a brief power cut at a nuclear plant. Firefighters are using more than 30 water-bombing planes to tackle the flames.

The blaze broke out on Thursday.

The fire spread fast due to adverse weather conditions, with high temperatures, little moisture, and strong winds.

On Friday, the regional prime minister of Valencia, Alberto Fabra, described the incident as "the worst disaster in years."

"The number of hectares burnt is more than 1,000 and all the work is focusing on preventing the fire from spreading and on channeling it towards an area where it is easier to extinguish," Fabra said.

In neighbouring Catalonia to the north, the fire service said it had evacuated scores of people due to a fire that had burned 700 hectares in Prats de Rei, near Barcelona.

The exact cause of the fire is not clear, but officials are not ruling out arson and two people have already been arrested in connection with the fire.

MRS/MF/HGL
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