20 people were trapped in Lugar da Várze – evacuations taking place due to forest fires

It was reported last night (6th September 2016) that the area of Paradela “has been completely evacuated, as well as Cabeceiras de Basto, Soure and Pena Ribeira as fighting the flames was are too complicated.

About two dozen people in the place of the Várzea, Soajo, Arcos de Valdevez, and Ponte da Barca, and military GNR are held in that town because of a forest fire, according to Civil Protection.

The councilor of the municipal civil protection Arcos de Valdevez, Olegario Gonçalves, said that “the people and the GNR were stranded because the fire took hold of the access road that place.” “They’re waiting for the first opportunity to be able to leave,” he added.

The councilman said, however, that the removal of residents in Várzea “is for now in ‘standby’, as firefighters try to control the flames.”

Olegario Gonçalves told Lusa that the area of ​​the Peneda Geres Park (PGNP) “there were dead animals”, without specifying the number and “some inhabitants of that place were at risk of life because they have been surrounded by the flames.”

The commander of Arcos de Valdevez fire operation, Delfim Mota told SIC Noticias that there are several fires along the housing and which has several teams to fight the blaze on site. Several people suffered smoke inhalation when they try to protect their homes and had to be assisted.

A couple of Paradela, place already evacuated Soajo, Ponte da Barca, was transported by INEM to hospital with burns on his face, said Councilman Civil Protection. Olegario Gonçalves did not know the extent of the burns victims who were hit while fighting a fire near his home. Also he did not mention age.

Robalo Simões, second operational commander of the Civil Protection of Viana do Castelo, he added that another person was taken to the Hospital of Lima by inhalation of fumes.

Delfim Mota added that the strong wind and high temperature make “a small fire into a large fire.” The commander said that there is “lack of air support.”

According to the information given on the site of the Civil Protection, the site is about 54 operational supported by 21 vehicles and an air environment.

Delfim Mota added that “the situation is already getting back to normal in the town of Paradela.” Although the fire has already passed this village, there are no conditions for people to return to their homes.

The villages of Paradela and Lugar da Várze, in Arcos de Valdevez municipality, were evacuated due to this fire. According Olegario Gonçalves, the place of Paradela “has been completely evacuated.”


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