NEWS

Forest fire in Geraneia mountains ‘most destructive in decade,’ satellite data shows

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A wildfire that swept through a mountain range west of Athens and is currently in remission was the “most destructive fire of the decade,” in terms of burned forested area, according to the National Observatory of Athens on Monday.

By Monday evening, the blaze in the Geraneia mountains had burned 27.4 sq miles of vegetation since it broke out five days ago (May 19), 20 sq miles of which was protected pine forests, based on the analysis of the latest satellite data from the National Observatory’s Meteo weather service.

The fire, the first major blaze of the summer, started near the village of Schinos near the Gulf of Corinth and moved quickly into west Attica, burning a dense pine forest and several houses and buildings. No injuries were reported.

The civil protection agency said the blaze started by someone burning vegetation in an olive grove.

On Monday, the fire was in remission, but the fire department maintained a force of more than 260 firefighters in the wider area, backed by 71 fire engines, three aircraft, three Pezetel and one helicopter.