Wildfires ravage Catalonia, northeastern region of Spain

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A series of raging wildfires in Spain’s northeastern region of Catalonia have killed at least 3 people and injured 19 others, officials said on Sunday. The fires have burned thousands of acres in recent days.

The fires, which have been fanned by dry conditions and winds up to 55 miles (90 kilometers) per hour, have burned about 13,000 hectares (32,100 acres) as of late Sunday evening. The most serious fire broke out on Sunday afternoon and continued to burn out of control during the late evening hours.

According to the Spanish Interior Minister, at least three people have been killed by the fires. A 60-year-old man and his 15-year-old daughter were killed after they attempted to evade flames by jumping off of a cliff and drowned in the sea below.


 

A 75-year-old man was killed when he went into cardiac arrest. Spanish authorities said a further nineteen people have been injured, including an 8-year-old girl and a 65-year-old French citizen who suffered burns to 80 percent of his body. Thousands of people have also been forced to evacuate their homes, and more evacuations are expected if the fires continue to spread.

Spain is regularly hit by wildfires. Eleven firefighters were killed in 2005 when a forest fire caused by a barbecue devastated a large area in Spain’s central province of Guadalajara. A wildfire also burned more than 2,000 hectares (4,900 acres) on the Spanish island of Ibiza in May 2011, making it the worst wildfire in the island’s history.

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