What Travelers Need to Know About the Spain and Portugal Wildfires
At least 31 people are dead and dozens more are injured because of the 145 fires currently raging in Portugal and the Spanish region of Galicia, the BBC reported.
In Portugal, the fires have been exacerbated by “exceptional” weather conditions, including a drought and unseasonably high temperatures, Civil Protection Agency spokeswoman Patricia Gaspar told the Associated Press. Portugal’s Coimbra, Castelo Branco, Aveiro, and Viseu regions were hardest hit as the fires continued into Monday.
In the Galicia region of Spain, arsonists are being blamed for taking advantage of the dangerous weather conditions.
According to The Telegraph, the Muniellos Natural Reserve — home to the endangered Cantabrian brown bear — has been affected.
In addition to unseasonably warm temperatures and a prolonged draught, the region has felt the impact of winds from the former hurricane, Ophelia, which was spiraling along Europe’s Atlantic coast.
While storm Ophelia is now categorized as a “post-tropical cyclone,” it was still producing sustained winds of up to 100 miles per hour over the weekend.