Forest Fires in Portugal and Canada

60 people have been killed in huge forest fires in central Portugal. Portugal’s prime minister, António Costa, described these fires as “the greatest tragedy”. Three days of national mourning were declared in Portugal.

Portugal, like most of southern Europe, is prone to forest fires in the dry summer months. The country was hit by a series of fires last year which devastated more than 100,000 hectares (247,000 acres) of the mainland.

The Canadian province of British Columbia has declared a state of emergency as wildfires sweep through the territory.

More than 138 new wildfires broke out in this July 2017 alone. More than 1,800 firefighters were tackling the fires and a further 260 were coming to their aid from other parts of Canada. Saskatchewan was sending three air tankers and 30 firefighters.