THESSALONIKI — Three Canadair fire-fighting aircraft and two helicopters have been put into the fray to put out the fire that broke out on Tuesday afternoon in Thessaloniki's Seikh Sou forest, which reaches right up to the edge of the city. The aircraft have been constantly dousing the flames from above, while the Russian Beriev 200 aircraft was expected to arrive to assist in the fire-fighting effort.
The fire brigade said it had managed to cut off the fire heading toward the hotel "Philippio", which had been safely evacuated with the assistance of the police as it was very near the flames.
The effort is now focused on putting out the fire in a stream bed in the north section of the forest, while the situation in the south near the ring road was described as "manageable" and vehicle traffic on the road has not been stopped.
A total of 64 fire fighers, 21 fire engines and four teams of foot are operating on the ground.
According to the mayor of Neapoli-Sykies Simos Daniilidis, the Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA), the fire was not threatening residences but heading toward the interior of the forest, while he appealed to people to stay off the roads in the area to help the fire brigade in its work.