Residents flee Lebanon forest fire

2010-12-05 18:31

Fatri - Firefighters in Lebanon battled a forest blaze on Sunday that has raged out of control for the past week, and frightened villagers north of Beirut fled as flames threatened to engulf their homes.

As an international flotilla of firefighting planes in neighbouring Israel finally brought under control the largest fire in that nation's history after a four-day battle, 42 separate blazes were reported in Lebanon, four of them large, the civil defence services said.

President Michel Sleiman travelled to the village of Fatri, 45km north of Beirut to inspect efforts to control the blaze, which has devastated 150 000m²  of woodland.

Municipal council leader Imad Daou told AFP that rough terrain hampered the firefighting effort while high winds had fanned the flames. "Trees more than 100 years old, olive groves and pines have been lost," he said.

The blaze has claimed no lives, but six civil defence personnel have suffered minor injuries. Frightened villagers began to flee from their homes on Sunday.

Lebanese army helicopters tried to douse the flames from the air, while firefighters battled the blaze on the ground.

A civil defence official said the emergency services were fighting "numerous fires" in different parts of the country fuelled by tinderbox conditions.

Need more capacity

Another large blaze raged on Sunday in the Wadi Shahrur area close to the capital, also threatening homes.

"We need three times more capacity to face these fires," Interior Minister Ziad Baroud told reporters.

"The inability to put out the fires is due to a lack of strategy," Sleiman told LBC television.

"We must work out a national plan to fight fires," he said, adding his regret that "political tensions delay everything".

According to the meteorological service, Lebanon has recorded just 51.2mm of rain since September, compared with 214.8mm in the same period last year.

Lebanon's southern neighbour Israel, affected by the same extended summertime conditions and drought, has been battling a forest fire since last Thursday.

That blaze killed 41 people.

Read more on:    lebanon  |  fires
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Fashion
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Friday Cape Town - 16:15 PM
    Road name: Wet Weather
    RAIN across the greater Cape Town area - drive with care and use headlights - Allow Extra Tavel Time
  • Friday Kuils River - 09:28 AM
    Road name: Polkadraai Road Eastbound
    ROADWORKS between the R102 Van Riebeeck Road and the R310 Baden Powell Drive exit - DELAYS
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2 TV Series for R250

Get 2 TV Series box sets for R250 and save up to R148! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on beauty & fragrances

Save up to 30% off beauty and fragrances. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on electronics!

Save up to 35% on electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Nokia E6

Nokia E6 has 8-megapixel digital camera with autofocus and built...

From R2599.69

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

The day may have a fluctuating sensitive energy to begin with, but later when the Moon moves into dramatic and creative Leo you...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.