By Lisa on Aug 01, 2013 with Comments 4
Mallorca is on fire and not just in a good way for the millions of summer visitors who come to sizzle on the beach, but also in a literal way. Mallorca is actually on fire.
Here is a video of compiled images from the last few days. Video source
The wildfire that has eaten up so much of Mallorca’s countryside is finally under control and the 700 people of villages Estellencs, Es Grau and Ses Tanquetes that had to be evacuated are now back in their homes. The fire should be completely extinguished within the next few hours.
Images of Mallorca on Fire
These four images are taken from an article in The Mail Online:
The fire, which has been raging since Friday, has caused damage to the UNESCO Serra de Tramuntana Mountain range that will take 80 years to repair. It has been described as an environmental nightmare and livestock and wild animals have been lost in the blaze.
La Reserva de Puig de Galatzo
On Sunday night the wind, which keeps changing direction and fanning the fire, was pushing the flames towards La Reserva de Puig de Galatzo, a protected nature reserve, where the excursion company I work for actually operates a trip.
There was a special team of experts standing by on Sunday night in case the animals from La Reserva had to be evacuated. In the end, it was not necessary.
The Biggest Fire Mallorca has Witnessed
Even though wildfires are an annual problem here on Mallorca, this has been the worst in 15 years. After four days of constant battle, the flames are only just out. The fire was believed, at it’s strongest point, to have been 3km in length.
The smell of smoke could be detected all the way from the tourist resorts of Magaluf and Santa Ponsa and the flames could be seen from as far away as Palma.
The fire started east of Andratx on Friday evening and spread instantly. A reporter for the Majorca Daily Bulletin said: “The speed of the fire was astonishing you could see its progress almost metre by metre, tree by tree.”
The Cost of the Fire
There is not yet an official estimate of the cost of the fire but the figures will certainly be in the millions.
It has been confirmed that 1,800 hectares of land have been destroyed by the fire and the environmental and ecological repercussions are grim.
Fire trucks, fire fighters and military staff were brought from all over the Balearics and mainland Spain. The island was on level three red alert, the highest fire warning level there is. The Spanish Ministry of Defence dispatched 186 personnel, 40 vehicles and 4 helicopters to Mallorca.
On Saturday an official urgent request from emergency services went out to boat owners in Paguera to please leave space for the fire planes.
On the ground, 400 fire fighters battled continuously for days while 26 hydro-planes (water carrying aircraft) were used to put the flames out from above.
Who is to Blame?
On Tuesday the Balearic government denied that it’s forest fire plan is flawed and that cut backs have been made, stating that “this is the largest fire fight the Balearics have ever witnessed and everything is being done to battle the blaze.”
Initially a German resident was arrested on Friday, accused of causing the fire but has denied responsibility.
Since then a local Spanish resident has come forward and admitted that he is to blame. He had a barbecue with friends and left the coals to die off over night. In the morning, he says, he threw what he thought were just the ashes onto his land and then left.
The embers, which were still alight set fire the the dry scrubland and the rest is history. By the time the fire was found it was already out of control and spreading at an alarming speed.
The man, Ignacio G. H. is in police custody, where he will remain for the time being.
About the Author: Lisa, born and grew up in England, live in Mallorca, Spain... Have visited more than 20 countries, have twice as many to yet visit, love sharing experiences....