Fire service examining indications of arson in Evia blaze


As efforts to tackle a big forest fire at a nature reserve on the island of Evia continued for a fourth day on Friday, authorities were examining indications that the ongoing blaze was caused by arson.

Officers of the Greek fire department's special arson section (DAEE) have reportedly found objects used in setting fires, such as cloths, plastic parts of jerrycans and accumulated branches and wood.

Greek broadcaster SKAI said DAEE is examining evidence showing that the blaze started in three different parts of the forest and has taken 25 witness testimonies.

Authorities have also spoken with three suspects who are residents in the area, as part of the ongoing investigation.

As winds subsided overnight, 390 fire fighters manning 101 vehicles were able to limit the fire in a hard-to-reach canyon near the village of Platania and on Friday morning there were no active fronts in the area.

Firemen were assisted by seven army units.

At dawn, six aircraft and three helicopters returned to douse the flames.