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Fire horror returns to Monchique foothills

Another large fire has suddenly engulfed countryside in the Monchique foothills around Rasmalho.

The alert went out at 5pm this evening, just as fears of any more wildfires this year were beginning to subside.

Right now, 124 firefighters from 11 corporations, back by 41 vehicles and three helicopters are battling two fronts.

Air support will be forced to stop by nightfall.

We will update as news changes.

Reports elsewhere talk about the fire having started behind the petrol stations, in a valley full of eucalyptus.

The fire appears to be on land either bordering or part of the Morgado de Reguengos estate.

UPDATE 8pm:

After numerous reports that the fire was spreading rapidly and endangering homes in the area, national fire website fogos.pt has listed the fire as in the ‘phase of resolution’. This is thanks to the rapid response by so many teams of firefighters, and the fact that three helicopters managed to get a lot of work done before darkness fell.

The causes of this fire are still to be explained.

According to TVI 24, one helicopter was still working at 8pm this evening.

Elsewhere, an incident today in Monchique means a small group of firefighters and a vehicles will be on duty there too through the night.

The resolution phase precedes ‘conclusion’ and implies firefighters will remain on the ground in Rasmalho until at least tomorrow morning.

A message on Facebook’s Forest Fire Alert! page half an hour ago, said: “We watched this fire develop from our home in Monte Canelas and watched the excellent efforts of the fire authorities along with air support.

Looks like it is contained now – thank you to those whose efforts resulted in the hopeful resolution”.

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com

Photo: taken from the Algarve based Facebook Forest Fire Alert! group which began this summer and has been keeping locals updated hour by hour through the fire season