Fire in Tenerife continues, affecting around 200 hectares of forest

Published on July 22, 2022
TenerifeNews from Tenerife
tenerife forest fire july 2022 spain
Image from Cabildo de Tenerife Twitter feed

The fire that started yesterday morning in Tenerife continues today and for the moment about 200 hectares of public forest have been affected.

The president of the Canary Islands, Ángel Víctor Torres pointed out that this fire is now the 12th currently affecting the Spanish territory. According to the data provided by the technicians at this meeting, the flames have so far affected some 200 hectares and the fire has a perimeter of 5 kilometers of public forest, without affecting, for the time being, any homes.

The head of the Executive announced that 150 troops have been dispatched to help with the fire extinction. However, the operation amounts to a total of 230 people, including the security forces. During the day, a total of 10 aerial means have been operated, which will intervene again first thing in the morning.

This fire has many similarities to the 2007 fire, which originated in the same area and also headed west. However, the president clarified that there are "better conditions because there are no relevant gusts of wind and it is expected that this will continue in the coming hours." However, high temperatures, together with low humidity, represent a potentially aggravating factor, so for this reason, the president considers wants to try and stabilize the fire this Friday.

The technicians warn that the worst is the orography since it is an area of ​​ravines and with difficult forest tracks.

Regional government support prior to Tier 2 declaration

Pedro Martín thanked the regional government for its support from the outset, even before the fire rose to level 2. 

The fire started at 10:19 a.m. and, at 2:00 p.m., it went to level 2 at the request of the Cabildo de Tenerife, with the Government of the Canary Islands assuming the direction of the emergency, enforcing the Special Civil Protection and Attention Plan Forest Fire Emergencies in the Autonomous Community of the Canary Islands (INFOCA).

Around 5:00 p.m., it was estimated that it had affected 110 hectares of scrubland and pine forest, occupying an area of ​​about five square kilometers. Around 8:00 p.m., the affected surface had risen to 200 hectares.

As a preventive measure, the Fuente de Pedro camping area, the Barranco de la Arena camp, as well as the El Lagar and La Tahona recreational areas were evacuated.

Possible change of wind and reinforcement of the right flank

About 200 troops are part of the fire extinguishing device. According to the head of the Civil Protection service, Monserrat Román, the flames are advancing along their main front in a westerly direction, but a change in the direction of the wind is not ruled out tonight that could push the fire towards the right flank, so that area will be reinforced to contain a possible spread.

During the afternoon, the Minister of Security reported that there are no houses affected, but that, in a preventive way, the hamlets near the TF-344 road have been evicted, specifically 13 houses and some 31 people, who have moved to family houses. In addition, the closest recreational and camping areas have been evacuated and the Cabildo de Tenerife will limit activities in the mountain area from Santa Úrsula to Icod de Los Vinos. Until now, public areas of the forest crown have been burned, without affecting power lines, although it is not ruled out that the flames have reached a tool room.

During the afternoon, a total of ten aerial resources have acted: two from the Cabildo, three from the Government of the Canary Islands and four aerial resources from the Ministry (MITECO), in addition to the Civil Guard helicopter acting as aerial coordinator with the General Directorate of the Government from the Canary Islands. For the night, it is expected to have a hundred troops, as well as the security forces.

During the afternoon, firefighting personnel from the Cabildo de Tenerife participated in the firefighting tasks by land; Firefighters Consortium; EIRIF teams from the Government of the Canary Islands based in La Gomera; the BRIF brigades of the Ministry of Ecological Transition and Demographic Challenge (MITECO); Military Emergency Unit (UME); security agents of the Local Police, State Security Forces and Corps (Civil Guard and National Police) and General Corps of the Canarian Police; as well as means of Civil Protection, the Canary Islands Emergency Service and the Spanish Red Cross.

With the declaration of level 2, the Military Emergency Unit (UME) was incorporated into the extinction tasks, with the first contingent that deploys a platoon made up of 20 soldiers, three fire engines, a nurse and an operations manager. During this night troops from Gran Canaria have been incorporated.

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