Some 200 firefighters, supported by Canadair, were fighting on Saturday afternoon against a forest fire near Saint-Marcel-lès-Annonay, in Ardèche, which has already destroyed several dozen hectares and threatened houses, according to the Codis du department.
"Ultimately, 280 firefighters" will also come from the Loire and the Drôme who will be mobilized to fight the fire which started in the early afternoon, said the Departmental Fire and Rescue Operational Center (Codis ) of Ardèche. Driven by the wind, the fire, the origin of which has not yet been determined, risked heading towards the neighboring Loire department. Residents watered their homes to protect them.
France: The 4 canadairs were reinforced by 200 mobilized firefighters. There are now 60 Ha burned by the fire near Saint-Marcel-lès-Annonay. pic.twitter.com/3cLQraPvg4- Rebecca Rambar (@RebeccaRambar) August 1, 2020
Evacuation as a precaution
According to the Dauphiné Libéré, the inhabitants of the Concise district, on the heights of the small town, are being evacuated. This concerns about twenty houses. The town has opened its multipurpose room to welcome them and provide them with drink or even food if the situation requires it, indicates Mayor Laurence Dumas to the regional daily. The few drops of water that fall are for the moment insufficient to help the firefighters hampered in their intervention by a changing wind.
Unfortunately, the region is experiencing this kind of dramatic situation. The fire of August 20, 2000, particularly destructive, had devastated 1,800 ha in this same sector between the Ardèche and the Loire, without causing any victims. At the time, 950 firefighters had braved the furnace and about fifty homes, in several hamlets, had been evacuated.
The Ardèche and the Loire were still placed on Saturday in orange heat wave vigilance by Météo France.