France will receive help from Germany, Greece, Poland, Romania and Austria to fight the fires that are devastating the country and that have already claimed almost 50,000 hectares so far this year. This was reported this Thursday by President Emmanuel Macron.
“Our partners come to the aid of France in the face of the fires. Thanks to them. European solidarity is on the march”, he wrote on his official Twitter account, through which he also pointed out that more than 10,000 firefighters and civil security personnel are fighting the flames throughout French territory “with courage and determination ”. “These firefighters are our heroes,” she has said.
Macron has also paid tribute to two firefighters who died carrying out their firefighting duties. Both died after becoming ill while in fire zones, not as a result of the flames.
For the president, the priority is focused on saving human lives and he sympathized with the evacuees for the damage they have suffered. “For the people evacuated in the burning areas, it is a wait and a concern. For the affected inhabitants, sometimes it is a life that is erased. Save all lives, save all that can be saved, then rebuild: no one will be forgotten”, the French president stressed.
The flames affect Gironde, in the southwest of the country, where, according to the latest data, 6,800 hectares have burned in the region since the fire was rekindled on Tuesday, despite harsh weather conditions.
“The ground vegetation is extraordinarily dry after more than a month without rain. Temperatures are expected to be 40 degrees and will remain so until Saturday, which, together with the dryness of the air, creates a severe risk of the fire stoking up,” the Gironde Prefecture said in a statement.
In that area, some 10,000 people were evacuated from their homes as a precaution, while firefighters indicated that they have prevented the fire from entering towns, after two dozen houses were affected in recent days.
The southern area of Bordeaux suffered a major fire last July that affected some 12,000 hectares. Firefighters believe that this new fire, which was revived on Tuesday night, responds to the fact that the embers were not well extinguished.
The situation changes in Aveyron, southeastern France, where a farmer is charged after the authorities considered that the fire was caused by work he was doing in the field with a machine.
In that place, some 700 hectares have burned, although the fire is not yet controlled, unlike the one in Maine et Loire, in the northwest, which firefighters consider controlled after having affected some 1,500 hectares.
This wave of fires has led the French government to call for volunteer firefighters to also join the fight against the flames, in which thousands of professionals participate.
“There are many volunteer firefighters fortunately. We work to improve this volunteering. Employers must take steps to free these volunteers from their jobs so they can join the fire service. It is a civic act,” Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said from Mostuéjouls in Aveyron.