Heat, winds fuel forest blazes in Portugal

AP News
Posted: Aug 27, 2013 5:38 AM

LISBON, Portugal (AP) — Around 1,000 firefighters are trying to put out 11 major wildfires in Portugal amid continuing hot weather and strong night-time winds.

The National Civil Protection Authority said Tuesday the biggest blaze was near Viseu, about 200 kilometers (120 miles) north of the capital Lisbon. It said four water-dropping aircraft were helping more than 360 firefighters working in thick woodland and ravines there.

Temperatures above 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit) were forecast for northern areas where wildfires have caused the most damage, but winds were expected to drop.

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Officials said a 23-year-old firefighter died Monday night from severe burns he sustained in a wildfire last week. That blaze killed another firefighter at the scene.

Forest blazes have caused the death of four Portuguese firefighters this summer.