For fifth consecutive day the forest fire is raging on the island of Rhodes on Saturday forcing more evacuations of villages and thre hotels. Greece’s Fire Service said the blaze was out of control, keeps expanding and moves eastwards to the Gadoura dam. Power outages as the fires fire on the island near the High Voltage Network, the THIS (Thermal Electric Station) that was shut down.
The situation is considered as particularly serious due to the winds blowing with intensity of 5 Beaufort in the area which make the work of firefighting difficult.
According to local media rodiaki.gr, three hotels in Kiotari have been ordered to evacuate and some buses transferred the tourists to a safe area.
A couple of hours later rodiaki.gr reported that the three hotels were on fire.
— Ian Edwards (@beescoachian) July 22, 2023
According to state broadcaster ERT, all the three hotels were evacuated.
Residents in the villages of Lardos and Pilonas were also ordered to evacuate for precautionary reasons. While 300 people in Laerma village had been safely evacuated on Friday night.
Until 3 p.m. Saturday, a group of firefighters were trapped in Ypseni Monastery while they were trying to convince the nuns to evacuate.
The fire broke out on Tuesday, July 18, despite efforts by firefighters and volunteers to control it, even after an overnight battle against the flames on Friday.
Although the Fire Service had managed to put out several rekindled blazes on Rhodes over the last few days.
Video: Water-dropping on Profitis Ilias on Friday
Some 173 firefighters with 35 fire engines and 10 ground teams are battling the blaze, assisted by 3 water-dropping aircraft and 2 helicopters.
Another 31 firefighters with 4 fire engines and 3 ground teams were also expected to arrive from Slovakia on Saturday.
Local authority water tanks are also helping out.
Power outages due to fire
Due to the fire, the Greek Electricity Distribution Network Operator DEDDIE has reportedly announced that it is proceeding with planned rotating power outages.
DEDDIE announced that due to the ongoing fire on the island near the High Voltage Network, the THIS (Thermal Electric Station) of Rhodes Prefecture was shut down and it was deemed necessary to plan for today, Saturday, July 22, 2023, until the evening, alternating power outages of limited extent and duration of up to 1 hour, in order to ensure the smooth operation of the electricity system.
DEDDIE earnestly requests consumers to limit the unnecessary consumption of electricity, especially for the peak hours of 12:00 – 15:00 and 17:00 – 22:00.