More evacuated as forest fire reignites in southern France
A forest fire in France's southern Aveyron region has reignited, sparking the evacuation of 1,000 more people and burning a total of 1,260 hectares, local authorities said Sunday.
France has been buffeted this summer by a historic drought as well as a series of heatwaves and several forest fires, notably in the southwest.
The Aveyron fire, which has been raging since Monday, appeared to be under control and dying out on Saturday afternoon when it suddenly reignited in a "virulent" manner, gobbling up 500 more hectares (1,235 acres), the prefecture said.
At least 1,000 people were evacuated from the village of Mostuejols near the city of Millau and six nearby hamlets, it said.
Some 3,000 people had been evacuated because of the fire, but were allowed back when it appeared under control. No casualties have been reported so far from the blaze.
A local man was under investigation for accidentally starting the fire when a metal part of his trailer touched the road, sending off sparks that ignited the dried vegetation.
In eastern France, police said on Saturday they were banning entry to most forests in the Bas-Rhin region near the German border, in order to limit the risk of fires igniting.
In the southwestern Gironde region around Bordeaux, another fire that flared on Tuesday was under control after rain fell overnight, a senior official said.