The disaster area this Thursday afternoon. / SALVADOR SALAS

The Sierra Bermeja wildfire forces the closure of the AP-7, near Estepona, to traffic again

The huge blaze started at 9.37pm on Wednesday in two different zones, and investigators are working to find out if it was started deliberately

JUAN CANO / JOSÉ MARÍA MARTÍN

The changing winds, with gusts of up to 45 km/h, has complicated the situation with the Sierra Bermeja fire, which has already affected the municipalities of Estepona, Jubrique, Genalguacil and Benahavís, this Thursday afternoon (9 September).

Despite the efforts of hundreds of firefighters on the ground, supported by 29 aircraft - including water-dropping planes and helicopters, a section of the AP-7 motorway has been closed to traffic again, in both directions.

More than 600 people evacuated as the Estepona, Jubrique and Genalguacil fire spreads to Benahavís

So far, some 600 people have been advised to leave their homes on two residential developments in Estepona and one in Benahavís, since the fire was sparked on Wednesday evening.

However, there been no reports of personal injuries and it is believed that only one abandoned property that has been affected by the fire.

Extra support to tackle the blaze has been called in from Cadiz, Cordoba, Granada, Jaén and Seville, as well as the firefighting teams from Malaga province.

The fire started at 9.37pm on Wednesday in two different zones, which opens up the possibility that it was started intentionally, something that the specialists from the Forest Fire Investigation Brigade (BIF) and the Seprona nature protection service of the Guardia Civil are already looking into

The Infoca forest fire brigade has pointed out that the terrain is difficult to work on, it has very steep slopes and a strong west wind is blowing in the area that is making fire-fighting tasks difficult.