New wildfire on Spain’s Tenerife island forces 3,000 evacuations. Area suffered major summer fire
October 5, 2023 By The Associated Press
MADRID (AP) — Soldiers and firefighters were battling to control a new wildfire on Spain’s Tenerife island that has forced some 3,000 people to leave their homes for safety, the Canary Islands government said Thursday.
The blaze, which started Wednesday, is centred on the towns of Santa Ursula and La Orotava in the mountainous northeast of the island, away from the main tourist areas in Tenerife’s southwest.
The same area suffered one of the island’s worst wildfires in decades in August when 14,000 hectares (35,000 acres) of pine forest and scrubland were burnt and some 12,000 residents evacuated over several weeks. Although that wildfire was brought under control it was never fully extinguished. Small fires have continued to break out periodically in the same area due to winds and high temperatures.
Some 120 agents including soldiers and firefighters were taking part in the operation to put out the fire, the Canary Islands government said. So far, an area of just 30 hectares (70 acres) has been affected.
The island, like the rest of Spain, has been experiencing an intense drought for several years and unusually high temperatures so far in October.
The seven Canary Islands are located off the northwest coast of Africa and southwest of mainland Spain.