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Entire Rhodes on “state of emergency”: Active fire fronts on July 26

A state of emergency was declared for the entire island of Rhodes on Wednesday due to the fires that are burning for the 9th consecutive day.

The Civil Protection has declared “state of emergency” to ten municipal units of the fire-striken island of Rhodes since July 18.

Like a “Lernaean Hydra”, where one fire front is extinguished another is rekindled.

Shortly before midnight Tuesday, the fire passed from Gennadi towards the villages of Lachania and Messanagro, a fact which alerted all the forces and volunteers in the area. However, no settlements were threatened and no evacuation order was given to residents.

Throughout the night, firefighters, many groups of volunteers. citizens and a lot of young people fought in these areas and managed to prevent the fire from spreading.

From early in the morning, the water-dropping from the firefighting planes started.

The great battle with flare-ups and fronts in Malona, Vati, Lachania and Gennadi

Low intensity of the winds prevailed since the early hours of Wednesday morning, however, winds are forecast to intensify to 4 Beaufort as of late afternoon.

According to local newspaper rodiaki.gr , the situation of the fire fronts by 12;20 Wednesday noon was as follows:

In Vati, the fire is moving slowly and steadily towards Profylia, fire zones are being created everywhere and towards the village of Mesanagros. In the morning there were several flare-ups near the settlement, but they were successfully dealt with by the Fire Department force that remains in the area as well as the residents who are on 24-hour standby. Small, but controlled flare-ups also occur in Gennadi, but they are dealt with immediately.

In Malona, since the morning the whole village responded to the call of the community president.

“We are all here, we are trying to clean everything that is in dry and burnt grass that could pose a risk for flare-ups. Unless we are all above the fire, this nightmare is never going to end. Every morning we are in better conditions and then it becomes hell,” the president told rodiaki

In Lachania, fire zones are being created in the North and North-East of the area, the coastal front that was burning last night, stopped 2 kilometers before the village.

The fire there was extinguished on the beach front and shortly before entering the village, th ecommunity president said adding “this does not mean that we are complacent since if the winds strengthen in the afternoon as has been the case for the last few days in the area. We will have an issue.”

He stressed that “right now there is a small front on the hill behind the South Rhodes Landfill, where a big operation is being done to limit it.”

On all fronts, a great effort is being made by firefighters, volunteers who participate with organized groups, but also many young people, mainly in order to limit flare-ups.

Rodiaki noted that “it is the 9th day that the fires are burning our island, causing fear, terror, dozens of deaths in animals that were in our forests and in the places where the fire passed, huge economic damage and incalculable consequences for the next period of time.”

The protests of the people in the villages that were affected by the fires of the last few days are also intense and they talk about mistakes and omissions that were made.

It is recalled that the deputy prosecutor on Rhodes investigates possible omissions and mistakes by the Fire Service and has asked high-ranking Fire Department officials for explanations.

According to Copernicus EU, a total of 13,312 ha were burned as of Tuesday, July 25, 2023.

Μunicipal units of Rhodes declared in state of emergency on Wednesday:

Rhodes, Kallithea, Ialyssos, Petaloudon, Afantos and Archangelos

Last week Attavyro, Kameiros, Lindos and last Sunday the municipal unit of South Rhodes.

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