Forest fires out of control on Ibiza island, Spain

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The forest fire which has been burning since Wednesday afternoon on Ibiza remains out of control, and is by far the worst fire ever seen on the Baleares. So far 2,000 hectares have been destroyed. Some 200 people have been evacuated from some 80 homes in the area affected by the fire in Sant Joan de Llabritja, and more than 250 people are now fighting the blaze which has left a six kilometre long swathe of destruction. 50 from the Military Emergency Unit working on Thursday will see their numbers taken up to 150 on Friday.

120 children were evacuated from their infant and primary schools in Sant Joan, and the municipality has also lost all land line phone connections. The hotel Paradise Beach in Portinatx has also been evacuated because of its proximity to the fire. 700 guests have been transferred to another three hotels which the Estela Polaris company has in El Puerto de Sant Miquel, in Sant Joan de Llabritja. Five helicopters have been brought in to fight the fire, which is being fanned by the strong winds in the area. Six amphibious planes have been drawn into the operation to drop water on the flames.

A man, named with the initials M.C.C. who is accused of accidentally starting the blaze has been arrested and is now at the disposition of the court, facing charges of serious negligence. It’s understood that he comes originally from Argentina and was using a device to smoke a bee hive when, according to the Guardia Civil, he unintentionally started the fire. The judge decided to keep him in custody until he gets full reports from SEPRONA, the Environment Department of the Guardia Civil. (EDIS)

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