20:03 / 18.06.2022.

Author: Katja Miličić

Forest fires on Brač and Hvar mostly under control

Forest fire near Jelsa on Hvar

Forest fire near Jelsa on Hvar

Foto: Dominik Strize / HRT

As a heat wave grips Europe, Croatia battled its first forest fires of the season on Saturday after blazes started on the islands of Brač and Hvar. By Saturday evening, firefighters said there were no open flames at both locations.

The fire on Brač, near Pučišća, burned some 20 hectares of forest and some olive trees. At one point during the afternoon, it looked as if the fire was headed dangerously close to some homes but firefighters managed to fight it back, said Nikola Martinić, the local fire chief.

“The way this fire started, we can be satisfied at the end of the day. There’s quite a bit of damage. Olive groves burned down as did a barn. However, we managed to save homes, vehicles and other structures,” Martinić said.

Four water bombers were called in to assist the efforts on the ground. Martinić said some of the damage was due overgrowth of vegetation on some of the land, which is privately owned farmland.

“People should really take care of their farmland. Untended areas suffered more damage while those that were cleared and neatly tended were mostly unscathed,” said Martinić.

Nearby, on Hvar, a fire is burning on the central part of the island, near Pitve. Around 40 firefighters are working to contain it but the terrain is steep and the forest dense. Although there are no open flames, there is still some smoke coming from the fire and firefighters plan to monitor the situation through the night.

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