Major wildfire reported in central Evia island; evacuation order given this time

Sunday, 12 August 2018 21:21
UPD:21:22
ΑΠΕ ΜΠΕ/ΒΑΣΙΛΗΣ ΑΣΒΕΣΤΟΠΟΥΛΟΣ

Καπνοί από την πυρκαγιά που ξέσπασε στο Κοντοδεσπότι στο Δήμο Διρφύων – Μεσσαπίων Εύβοιας, σε πυκνή δασική έκταση σε δύσβατο σημείο, την Κυριακή 12 Αυγούστου 2018. Εκκενώνονται προληπτικά τα χωριά Κοντοδεσπότι και Σταυρός. Σύμφωνα με την Πυροσβεστική, για την κατάσβεση επιχειρούν 60 πυροσβέστες με 28 οχήματα, 4 αεροσκάφη, 4 ελικόπτερα και 2 Pezetel. ΑΠΕ ΜΠΕ/ΑΠΕ ΜΠΕ/ΒΑΣΙΛΗΣ ΑΣΒΕΣΤΟΠΟΥΛΟΣ

The third major wildfire of the ongoing summer season in Greece erupted on Sunday in central Evia, the large island that hugs mainland Greece's central Aegean coastline, three weeks after a deadly blaze claimed the life of 94 people so far.

The response by authorities this time was overwhelming, in light of the unprecedented loss of life caused by the Mati wildfire on July 23.

Sunday's wildfire was centered in the pine-covered Kontodespoti site in the Dirfis-Messopea municipality, a mountainous region of Evia. The same-name village was evacuated, along with the nearby village of Stavros. A children's summer camp, kilometers from the wildfire front, was also evacuated as a precaution.

The evacuation order was given promptly and in an orderly fashion this time, with busses taking many local residents out of the area after they had congregated at a nearby football field.

The operation was in stark contrast to the blaze in coastal eastern Attica prefecture last month, where no official evacuation order was given as a wildfire driven by gale force winds torched practically all of the Mati settlement - another pine-covered site dotted by numerous holiday homes, many haphazardly built.

Nearly 200 firefighters, dozens of vehicles and firefighting planes were battling the blaze up until dusk on Sunday.

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