1,000 firefighters called out as heat, winds fuel forest blazes in Portugal
Portuguese firefighters work to extinguish a fire near Covilha, Portugal, Saturday, Aug. 24, 2013. Portuguese authorities were forced to evacuate holiday makers from a campsite in the Serra da Estrela national park on Saturday, as wildfires continued to hit the country. (AP / Francisco Seco)
Published Tuesday, August 27, 2013 6:33AM EDT
LISBON, Portugal -- Around 1,000 firefighters are trying to put out 11 major wildfires in Portugal amid continuing hot weather and strong night-time winds.
The National Civil Protection Authority said Tuesday the biggest blaze was near Viseu, about 200 kilometres (120 miles) north of the capital Lisbon. It said four water-dropping aircraft were helping more than 360 firefighters working in thick woodland and ravines there.
Temperatures above 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit) were forecast for northern areas where wildfires have caused the most damage, but winds were expected to drop.
Officials said a 23-year-old firefighter died Monday night from severe burns he sustained in a wildfire last week. That blaze killed another firefighter at the scene.
Forest blazes have caused the death of four Portuguese firefighters this summer.