Dryed up by the heat, the Greek forests are victims of fires every summer, fed by strong winds. And this summer again, Greece is facing a new heat wave, with temperatures hovering between 42 and 44 degrees.
A few days ago, a fire ravaged Mount Penteli, near the Greek capital. This Saturday, four villages in the northwest of the Peloponnese, near the city of Patras, were evacuated by Greek firefighters who must face a major forest fire. Ninety-five firefighters, 33 trucks, four bombers and helicopters were mobilized to fight this fire in the Zeria region.
Authorities sent alert messages on cell phones to warn residents of the need to evacuate the villages of Zeria, Kamares, Achaias, and Labiri. Hospitals in Patras and a neighboring town, Aigio, have also been alerted to possibly accommodate the wounded, while the coastguard has been put on alert to possibly rescue bathers who could be suffocated by smoke from the ash. The motorway in the area concerned as well as the Rio-Antirio bridge connecting the Peloponnese and mainland Greece were closed to traffic.