Spanish authorities: disaster tourists should not watch forest fires 16:28 in Abroad In the Valencia area, more than 500 firefighters are fighting a large forest fire. A group of 14 cyclists was seen nearby.

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Fighting forest fires in Teruel, in the Aragon region
NOS News

The Spanish authorities are calling on disaster tourists to stay away from the forest fires in the east of the country. These ‘fire tourists’, as they are called by the Spaniards, endanger themselves and hinder the extinguishing work.

In the vicinity of Valencia, more than 500 firefighters are fighting a large forest fire. Twenty aircraft and fire-fighting helicopters were also deployed. The fire has already destroyed more than 4,000 hectares of forest. 1700 people in the regions of Valencia and Aragon have had to leave their homes.

The regional authorities say 14 cyclists were seen near the fires, apparently wanting to take a look at the fire. “We ask again, and especially tourists, not to enter the area,” said the head of the regional authorities.

Concerns about tourism

Residents of the area are concerned about the impact of the forest fires on tourism. “The people here live on tourists who cycle and walk and on the few bars that are here,” a 72-year-old local resident told Reuters news agency. “This is really a disaster for anyone who loves nature.”

Spain’s Prime Minister Sànchez previously said the wildfires are “again proof of the climate condition” facing humanity.

There are also fears of forest fires in other parts of Southern Europe due to the drought last winter. According to figures from the European Commission, 785,000 hectares were destroyed by fires last year. Spain suffered 493 forest fires last year, more than ever recorded. More than 300,000 hectares went up in flames.

  • Hundreds of people evacuated because of the first major forest fire in Spain this year
  • Exceptionally high temperatures in Spain
  • Abroad

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