Portugal Fights Record Number of Wildfires for 1 Day in 2017

LISBON, Portugal (AP) —
A firefighting airplane drops its load of water on a forest fire in the hills outside Abrantes, central Portugal, Friday. (AP Photo/Armando Franca)

Portugal is fighting to put out a spate of wildfires after the southern European country hit a year high of outbreaks for a single day on Friday, authorities say.

Portugal’s Civil Protection Agency, which coordinates its firefighting efforts, said Saturday that it recorded a record for this year of 220 separate wildfires on Friday.

Over 2,500 firefighters supported by over 800 vehicles and 15 air units were still mobilized on Saturday morning to combat the flames.

Portugal has been hard hit by wildfires, including one that killed 64 people in June, during a summer marked by high temperatures and a lack of rain.

Wildfires in Portugal this year have accounted for more than one-third of the burnt forest in the entire 28-country European Union.

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