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New wildfire forces 10 000 people to evacuate, southern France

france-wildfires-july-2017

A new wildfire broke out in southern France overnight Wednesday, July 26, 2017, forcing at least 10 000 people to evacuate.

The latest fire comes a day after France asked for help from the rest of Europe to tackle the flames already raging in the tinder-dry south, including near the popular resort of Saint-Tropez, The Guardian reports. 

“The evacuations, at least 10 000, followed the progression of the fire. It’s an area that doubles or triples its population in summer,” said a fire service official on Wednesday of the blaze near Bormes-les-Mimosas on the Mediterranean coast.

More than 4 000 firefighters and troops, including 19 water-bombers, had already been mobilized on Tuesday, which left swaths of charred earth in their wake. At least 12 firefighters have been injured and 15 police officers affected by smoke inhalation since Monday.

The fires have hit areas in southern France, including the Var and Vaucluse departments and the town of Carros to the north of Nice. They have also been ravaging northern Corsica. 

Wildfires have burned more than 4 000 hectares (9 884 acres) of land since Monday, July 24.

In total, wildfires in France have consumed more than 75 000 hectares (185 329 acres) of forest since the start of the year, authorities say. 64 people have been detained since January for causing fires.

Featured image: Wildfires in France, July 2017. Credit: France 24

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