One of the Reocín wildfires. / javier rosendo

Arsonists blamed for another 20 wildfires in Cantabria region of Spain overnight

The smoke has now reached the city of Santander and authorities are calling on people to report those responsible for the environmental and economic damage and the risk to public health

MARINA ÁLVAREZ SANTANDER.

The Cantabrian authorities issued a statement pre-dawn today, Friday 28 October, to say that during the previous 12 hours some 20 new forest fires have been started in the region, by persons unknown, and that ten are still active. Smoke from the fires is now affecting the city of Santander.

The active wildfires are in Mazcuerras (two) Molledo (two), Bárcena de Pie de Concha ( two), Polaciones, San Roque de Riomiera, Arredondo and Santiurde de Toranza.

The fires which are still burning but have been stabilised by firefighters who worked through the night are in Valdáliga and Castro Urdiales, while others in Los Corrales de Buelna, Reocín, Molledo, Castro Urdiales, Cillorigo, Lamasón (two) and Ramales de la Victoria, on the boundary with Vizcaya, are under control.

Unlike the situation on Thursday, none of the active wildfires today are close to populated areas. All the new fires were started in areas which are high up and difficult to access.

The N-634 is still closed between Golbardo and Quijas due to one of the fires which were started on Thursday in Reocín, which have caused rockfalls.

Extraordinary weather conditions

The Cantabrian government has called once again for people to report arsonists because their actions cause serious environmental and economic damage and a risk to public health and lives.

The situation is exacerbated by the extraordinarily warm temperatures in Cantabria for this time of year. Last night the average temperature was 27C, with 28.2C recorded at Castro Urdiales at 1.30am.

Meanwhile, the fight goes on to extinguish the many fires in the region. Strong winds are forecast in mountainous areas and, once again, a yellow warning has been activated in the Liébana area.