Highlands area of the municipality of Santa Úrsula (Tenerife) where a wildfire is active, 5 October 2023. EFE/Ramón de la Rocha

Wildfire on Tenerife forces evacuation of thousands as heatwave grips Spain

Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain, Oct 5 (EFE).- Some 2,600 people have been evacuated from their homes in northeast Tenerife after a wildfire broke out, officials said.

(FILE) A helicopter participates in firefighting efforts in Candelaria, Tenerife, Spain, 16 August 2023. EFE/ Ramón De La Rocha

The fire broke out at around 3pm Wednesday near Santa Ursula, west of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, the island’s main city and port. The same area was ravaged by a huge wildfire in August.

Residents of the municipality of Santa Úrsula (Tenerife) are relocated as a result of the fire declared in the town, 5 October 2023. EFE/Ramón de la Rocha

Firefighters backed by six helicopters were battling the blaze, local authorities said.

Canary Islands regional president Fernando Clavijo told a press conference Thursday morning that overnight measures taken by the Military Emergency Unit (UME) appeared to have brought the situation under control.

“The night seems to have gone well and I hope that the evacuees can return home today,” he said.

The archipelago is expected to see temperatures as high as 34C (93.2F) on Thursday as a unseasonal heat wave grips the region and parts of southwestern Spain. EFE