30,000 people evacuated on Rhodes due to bushfires, Flemings testified: ‘No idea where we slept tonight’ Storms in Italy drive away bathers | outside

to updateForest fires on the island of Rhodes have reached the southwest coast. According to Greek media, three hotels caught fire. These will mainly be properties of holiday centers in Mitsis Village, Lindian Village and one of the hotel companies of the Hatzilazaro Group north of Kiotari. At least 30,000 people have been evacuated. Buses and sea vessels have been chartered for this purpose. The Coast Guard also helps. Small boats ferry people from shore to transfer them to larger boats.

look. The Flemish tourist in Rhodes testifies: “We don’t know what will happen, can we go home?”

Firefighters have been battling wildfires on the Greek island of Rhodes for five days. While other forest fires in Greece are currently under control, the fire continues to spread in Rhodes. Many hotels have been evacuated today. Thousands of tourists had to be brought to safety by coast guard buses and boats. The Rhodes fires started in the island’s wooded, mountainous and sparsely populated center, but calls for evacuations have now reached the southwest coast. High winds fanned the fire.

The towns of Kiotari, Lardos and Lindos in the southeast of the island are at serious risk from the fire. A fire department spokesman said the fire was difficult to put out. Strong winds with the force of six winds are blowing in the area around Rhodes. “The smoke is so thick that you can hardly breathe. People are being transported to Gennadi, where they are being transported to other hotels,” Rhodes deputy mayor Konstantinos Traraslias told Sky news channel in Athens.


Belgians

Seventy Belgians holidaying in Rhodes with TUI had to leave their hotels as a precaution, TUI’s Belgian spokesperson, Piet Demeyere, confirms to VTM NEWS. “At the moment there is not much risk to hotels, it is a precautionary measure, and later in the evening there should be more clarity: is a return to hotels possible, or is another solution necessary?”

If TUI passengers are unable to return to their hotels, the tour operator will contact them to find an alternative or to arrange a return flight to Belgium. TUI flies daily to Rhodes from Brussels these days. There are five passengers on Sunday’s flight who are scheduled to stay in the bushfire-affected area of ​​the island. They are given the option to leave for another part of Rhodes, or to rebook their flight for free.

Travel organization Corendon says about 200 of its travelers were involved in the evacuations and taken to safety by the Greek government. It is mainly about the Dutch people, but there are also Belgians and Danes. “They will be given the choice of going to alternative accommodation or returning home,” a spokeswoman said.

look. House Spokesperson Demeyer: “70 Belgian TUI passengers in the affected area of ​​Rhodes”

hot wave

In mainland Greece, fires are now feared to break out again due to drought and heat spreading across the country in waves. The average temperature in Greece was 36.5 degrees on Friday, but above 40 degrees in many places. Locally it could be higher than 40 degrees tomorrow.

Many Greeks remember with fright the July 1987 heat wave when it was sweltering for about two weeks and nearly 1,300 people succumbed to the heat. The Deputy Director of the Hellenic Institute of Meteorology, Theodoris Kollidas, said, according to Greek media, that it is difficult to compare the heat wave that year with the heat prevailing today. Then it was continuously hot and now there are three waves.

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Many European countries have sent firefighting planes and/or firefighters to help extinguish the fire. Slovak and Romanian firefighters are active in Rhodes, among others. It also operates a Jordanian and Israeli fire extinguisher. Greece is also receiving help from its major rival, Türkiye. That sent two firefighting planes and a helicopter. Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis thanked Turkey on Saturday for its help in fighting forest fires in Greece. “Thank you, Turkey,” the Greek prime minister wrote on Twitter. Both planes arrived at an air base near Athens on the same day.


Neighboring countries Greece and Turkey have been fighting for years over rights and natural gas resources in the Aegean Sea and the eastern part of the Mediterranean. Just last year, Erdogan threatened to invade the Greek islands because Greece militarized these islands against international agreements. Türkiye has claims over fourteen Greek islands, including Rhodes. However, there has been some rapprochement between the two rival NATO nations in recent weeks. For example, Greek Prime Minister Mitsotakis and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan recently agreed on the sidelines of a NATO summit in Lithuania to facilitate some rapprochement. Tensions between the two countries began to subside after the strong earthquake that hit Turkey in February. Athens immediately sent aid with other countries.

Severe thunderstorms battered northern and central Italy, sending swimmers fleeing

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Tourists have also had to flee elsewhere in Europe. Severe storms battered northern and central Italy on Saturday, causing significant damage to some places. The area around Bologna and the Adriatic coast in particular were hit by storms.

The weather service of the Emilia-Romagna region, of which Bologna is the capital, also reported severe thunderstorms in the provinces of Reggio Emilia, Ferrara and Ravenna. Pictures show collapsed electricity poles, collapsed homes, smashed roof tiles and wrecked cars. A video shows how bathers from Lido di Classe, near Ravenna, flee en masse from the beach.

It is not yet clear the exact extent of the damage, but according to a report in the newspaper “La Repubblica”, three people were injured in the province of Ferrara. Severe hailstorms have been reported in Bologna – in some cases hailstones the size of tennis balls – and authorities have warned residents about falling trees, road signs and metro use. Many train lines were also affected. Winds of up to 129 kilometers per hour were measured, according to the meteorological service.

It also stormed heavily in neighboring Marken. There, beachgoers were caught off guard by a sudden, violent storm that swept away entire rows of beach chairs and was accompanied by strong gusts of wind.

look. The manager of the Flemish B&B in Rhodes testifies: “The fire burned very strongly because of the strong winds”

Forest fires ravage Greece: 200 European firefighters help fight the fires

heat map. Very hot with temperatures reaching 46 degrees: This is how hot your vacation destination can be

Denton Watson

"Friend of animals everywhere. Evil twitter fan. Pop culture evangelist. Introvert."

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