61 houses, 250 hectares of forest reduced to ash in western Turkey

61 houses, 250 hectares of forest reduced to ash in western Turkey

MUĞLA – Doğan News Agency
61 houses, 250 hectares of forest reduced to ash in western Turkey

AA photo

A huge fire, which reduced to ash a total of 61 buildings and 250 hectares of forest in the western province of Muğla, was brought under control on Sept. 7

The fire broke out at noon of Sept. 6 in a forested area and spread to the Zeytinköy neighborhood in the Menteşe district of Muğla.

Menteşe District Governor Caner Yıldız said cooling work had started after the fire was brought under control, adding that there were no casualties due to fire.

“Our greatest blessing is that there was no loss of life. Last night due to the severe wind speed over 50 kilometers per hour, 61 building burned down completely. Also, according to our initial findings, 13 livestock and three donkeys were killed. Beekeeping is being done in the region and there are 11,000 beehives, but 1,500 of these hives have been completely burned,” said Yıldız.

“We have started to urgently investigate the damage. In the short term we will provide financial assistance. Today we are setting up tents in the region. Containers will come tomorrow. Extinguishing and cooling work from the ground and the air is ongoing,” he added.

The fire broke out in a forest in the Akbük neighborhood of the Menteşe district at around 2 p.m. on Sept. 6 and the flames rapidly spread due to the windy conditions.

Amphibious aircrafts, fire helicopters and water sprinklers from 16 different provinces, as well as caterpillars belonging to the Muğla Regional Forestry Directorate, were accompanied by a number of forest workers to battle the flames.

Health and gendarmerie units were also dispatched to the scene from neighboring provinces, and oversaw an evacuation of the Zeytinköy neighborhood, which houses 136 residences and 256 people.

Some 22 villagers who were trying to save their beehives and six forest workers were affected by the smoke and were taken under treatment. 

Muğla Governor Esengül Civelek and Muğla Mayor Osman Gürün visited the area and took information about it from officials late on Sept. 6.