…By for TDPel Media.
A firefighting plane involved in combating a wildfire in southern Greece has tragically crashed on the island of Evia.
The incident was captured on state television and showed the aircraft disappearing into a canyon before a fireball erupted shortly after.
As the fire raged on, evacuation orders were issued for several regions due to a third successive heat wave, exacerbating the situation.
Additional firefighting efforts from other countries were enlisted, but the fire continued to spread on the islands of Rhodes, Corfu, and Evia.
Firefighting Plane Crash on Evia
The firefighting plane crash occurred over the town of Karystos on the island of Evia near Athens, where an ongoing fire posed a significant threat.
State broadcaster ERT aired the distressing footage of the low-flying aircraft vanishing into a canyon before a devastating explosion ensued.
The status of the plane’s crew remains unknown at this point, adding to the tragedy of the situation.
Intensifying Wildfires during the Heat Wave
Greece faced another extreme heat wave, with temperatures soaring above 40°C in various regions.
Nighttime evacuations had already been conducted due to uncontrollable fires that had been burning for days.
On the islands of Corfu and Evia, additional evacuation orders were issued as the fire continued to spread.
The situation was equally critical on the island of Rhodes, where the fire was moving inland.
The efforts of numerous firefighters, along with support from Turkey and Slovakia, were crucial in attempting to contain the Rhodes fire, but it resurged amid hot and windy conditions.
Tourists and Evacuations
The severity of the wildfires forced thousands of tourists, including Brits, to be flown back from affected areas.
Many others faced the possibility of their summer holidays being canceled as authorities warned of an “extreme fire risk” in Crete.
Emergency flights were being organized to ensure the safe return of holidaymakers.
Greek Prime Minister’s Statement
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis acknowledged the challenges ahead, emphasizing that the entire planet, especially the Mediterranean, was grappling with climate change as a critical issue.
Despite the absence of a “magical defence mechanism,” he assured the public that they remained vigilant in their efforts to combat the fires.
He anticipated some relief after Thursday, though the situation remained uncertain.
Investigations and Climate Change Impact
An investigation into the causes of the fires and the preparedness and response of authorities was launched on the island of Rhodes.
The state broadcaster ERT reported that approximately 10% of the island’s land area had already been consumed by the fire.
Meanwhile, scientists released an assessment highlighting the profound impact of human-induced climate change in driving extreme heatwaves across various regions, including North America, southern Europe, and China.
The devastating crash of the firefighting plane and the ongoing wildfires in Greece highlight the seriousness of the situation.
With the country facing a third successive heat wave, the efforts to control the fires were complicated, necessitating additional support from neighboring countries.
As authorities grapple with evacuations and firefighting operations, the impact of climate change on the intensity and frequency of wildfires becomes increasingly evident.