France firefighters battle ‘monster’ wildfire near Bordeaux

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More than 1,000 firefighters are battling a “monster” wildfire in the south-western France that has already destroyed nearly 7,000 hectares (17,300 acres) of forest, officials say.

The raging blaze near the city of Bordeaux has gutted a number of homes and forced 10,000 residents to flee.

“It’s an ogre, it’s a monster,” firefighter representative Gregory Allione said.

Strong winds and high temperatures are hampering the firefighting operation.

This summer France and a number of other European countries have seen a wave of deadly wildfires, triggered by record temperatures and droughts across the continent.

More than 1,000 deaths have been attributed to the heat in Portugal and Spain.

In the UK, an amber extreme heat warning has now come into force, with temperatures forecast to hit 37C (99F) in some areas over the next four days. The heatwave will likely affect health, transport and working conditions, the authorities warn.

The huge wildfire in France’s Gironde region has been raging for two days near the commune of Landiras, about 30km (19 miles) south-east of Bordeaux.

Agencies

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