@Lusa

Two new fires add to Portugal’s agony : Sintra and Salvaterra de Magos

Sintra blaze broke out mid-afternoon

With the EU now sending help under the Civil Protection Mechanism, two new fires have started today, straight away joining the ranks of the most-worrying.

Explain reports, a fire with two fronts in the area of Dona Maria, in Belas (Sintra municipality) “continues to mobilise means”.

No-one from Sintra fire station has been available to comment, because they are all busy in firefighting response, says Expresso.

The two fronts are “very active” and there are fears they could reach residential areas.

Expresso describes the fire as being “at the doorway to Lisbon”, which the image above illustrates perfectly.

An hour ago, there were roughly 180 firefighters on  the ground, backed by 52 vehicles and one air support.

In Glória do Ribatejo, Salvaterra de Magos (Santarém district), the second ‘new’ fire began shortly before 1am, and is not being helped by the presence of strong winds.

A source for Civil Protection has told Lusa the fire began “violently, with projections, due to the wind. Some houses were in danger, but they ended up not coming into contact with the fire”.

The ‘good news’ of the late afternoon is that the fire that began in Ourém on Thursday and has been giving a lot of problems is deemed “active but controlled”.

“Works are evolving favourably”, said the source. There are a lot of hot spots, “due to the large area already burnt, and the dimension the fire took on (…) but in the main consolidation works are underway”. As of 5pm, there were 688 firefighters on the ground, backed by 222 vehicles and five air support – two of which are the Canadair water bombers which arrived from Spain earlier today, and which are due to return back across the border once darkness falls.

Other major incidents, like the fire in  Carrazeda de Ansiães, Bragança, are still active, but with “all the perimeter controlled”. Hopes are that the fire in Pombal is going the same way.

natasha.donn@portugalresident.com