Strong wind complicates Spanish firefighting

One thousand people have been evacuated from their homes to protect them from a forest fire that has destroyed at least 15,000 hectares (37066 acres) of land since Saturday (August 14), spurred on by a sweltering heatwave.

The blaze, which was sparked in Navalacruz, in the province of Avila, a rural area about 120 kilometers (74 miles) west of Madrid in the central region of Castilla and Leon, began when a car burst into flames on a highway on Saturday (August 14) and forced the evacuation of eight villages.

Regional environment chief Juan Carlos Suarez-Quinones said on Monday (August 16) a combination of strong winds, high temperatures and low humidity created the perfect conditions for the fire to spread, but firefighters were gradually bringing it under control.

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