Last night a 27-year-old man of no known address went a little way into the forest near Jedey to relieve himself. When he’d finished, he set fire to the toilet paper. In a very dry forest, during a heatwave, with signs everywhere saying “Hire fire risk”.
Words fail me.
He’s been arrested. The police caught him almost immediately when they went to investigate the fire. Unfortunately the fire raced away. So far there’s almost 2,000 hectares burned, 700 people evacuated, and worst of all, a firefighter called Francisco José Santana has died, trapped when the wind swung unexpectedly. He was only 54, married with five children.
It’s still out of control.
UPDATE 10 pm: 1,600 people evacuated from Fuencaliente and another 300 evacuated from Tacande in El Paso. The authorities have found a burned out hire car, but there’s no sign of the occupants, and nobody’s been reported missing. And the weather forecast is for stronger winds and higher temperatures.
UPDATE 05/08/16 7:45 am All fires forbidden even in municipal BBQ areas like El Pilar. Leisure areaas at El Pilar, La Pared Vieja, La Montaña de La Breña and La Fuente de Los Roques closed. Footpaths closed in El Paso, Breña Alta, Breña Baja, Mazo and Fuencaliente. Seriously, if the wind changes, you’re unlikely to get our fast enough. Some concerts cancelled. Weather forecast is for moderate to strong winds from the east and 34 – 36 ºC.