Scorching heat and dry weather this summer have fueled wildfires in various parts of the world, from the United States to Europe. Thousands of hectares of land have been burned and many residents have been forced to leave their homes. Scientists say climate change has led to more frequent and more powerful extreme weather events. The following material introduces us to the situation in several countries, starting with the eastern American state of Washington, where 185 buildings, many of them residential, were destroyed as a result of the fires.
These footage recorded by a resident of the city of Medical Lake, in the state of Washington, show part of the consequences of the powerful fires that have affected this region.
“This is your neighbor’s house and this is mom’s house,” Mr. Smith says to a friend for whom he recorded the video, to show him images of houses made of cinders and ashes. Voice of Medical Lake Resident Bryan Smith
The fires started shortly after noon Friday on the west side of the town of Medical Lake and then spread to other areas, Washington State Department of Natural Resources spokeswoman Isabelle Hoygaard said.
Authorities were unable to bring the fires under control by Saturday evening, prompting them to issue evacuation orders for a nearby community, Spokane, a city of about 230,000.
The burned structures were residential buildings and other buildings.
In Canada, thousands of residents of British Columbia were ordered to evacuate Saturday after wildfires forced the western Canadian region to declare a state of emergency.
The province is currently dealing with a third of the more than 1,000 active wildfires in Canada.
The fires are continuing to destroy land and endanger people’s lives in Europe as well.
Fires lit up the skies of the Spanish island of Tenerife in the early hours of Sunday as a wildfire raging in the north of the island remained out of control.
Standing on the terrace of his ash-covered house as thick smoke billowed behind him, local resident Sebastian Grillo said he had never seen fires of this magnitude on the island.
“I have never experienced this in my life. We have experienced fires, but not at this level,” says Mr. Grillo.
“We left with only our body clothes as the police only gave us 20 minutes. They brought us here and we are waiting to see if the smoke and fire leave our houses so we can go home,” said another resident of Tenerife, Maria Jose Rodriguez.
Scorching heat and dry weather this summer have contributed to the creation of fires in Albania as well, as shown by these images near the tourist village of Qeparo recorded on Saturday evening. As a result, tens of hectares of land were burned and houses and olive plantations were endangered. But the cause of the situation is arson by local residents. On Saturday, the Albanian police announced that they had arrested four people in the last 24 hours. In July, Albania identified and charged 14 people with arson.