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Wildfire in Gandía forces 3,000 from their homes

Authorities warn that the success of the firefighting operation will depend on winds today

View of the fire from Gandia.

Firefighters are battling blazes near Gandía, a popular tourist resort on the Spanish Mediterranean where 3,000 people have been evacuated since a wildfire broke out there on Monday. A contingent of 800 firefighters and soldiers, as well as 27 aircraft, have been dispatched to the area.

Around 20 homes burned down in the early hours of Tuesday in the residential communities of Montesol, Montepino and La Ermita, west of Gandía’s city center, where local authorities ordered new evacuations. Residents of the small nearby municipality of Pinet were also forced to flee their houses, bringing the total of evacuees to 3,000 according to José María Angel, head of the Valencia government’s emergency department.

Around 20 homes burned down in the early hours of Tuesday

Forty-eight hours after lightning struck in Llutxent, setting off a fire that has already burnt 2,800 hectares of land, authorities are warning that the success of the firefighting operation will depend on which way the wind blows this afternoon.

On Tuesday, changing winds gusting up to 60 kilometers an hour hindered the work of firefighters, and if there is a strong east wind on Wednesday evening, as is feared, the fire will be pushed towards Quatretonda after crossing a wooded mountain area, and from there to Xàtiva, a town with a population of around 30,000.

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