The prefecture of Gironde in southwestern France reported today that nearly 6,800 hectares of pine forest went up in smoke after the vast Landiras fire began to burn again.

"Nearly 1,100 firefighters are engaged ," the prefecture said, adding that "further reinforcements" are still expected on site.

The scorching temperatures that "should continue until Saturday and are combined with very dry air" create a "very serious risk of fire outbreak", the authorities explained in a statement. "The conditions are particularly difficult: the vegetation and soils are particularly dry after more than a month of rain," he explained.

Yesterday evening the flames led to the evacuation of about 10,000 people from their homes, including the entire population of the village of Moustey (nearly 700 people). The A63 motorway between Landes and Gironde has been completely closed to traffic.

The colossal fire was considered under control until Tuesday , when the flames regained strength, perhaps due to a malicious act, thanks to drought and high temperatures. In its first wave, which began a month ago, 14,000 hectares had already gone up in smoke.

Premier Elisabeth Borne and Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin are expected in the area. There have been no casualties so far, but 17 houses have burned down near the village of Belin-Beliet.

(Unioneonline / vl)

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