Cooler weather helps Spain with fires; rain helps in Germany

Jun 19, 2022, 5:32 PM | Updated: Jun 20, 2022, 5:37 am
Smoke rises over San Martin de Unx in northern Spain, Sunday, June 19, 2022. Firefighters in Spain ...

Smoke rises over San Martin de Unx in northern Spain, Sunday, June 19, 2022. Firefighters in Spain are struggling to contain wildfires in several parts of the country which as been suffering an unusual heat wave for this time of the year. (AP Photo/Miguel Oses)

(AP Photo/Miguel Oses)

              A cloud of smoke can be seen from afar not far from the district of Frohnsdorf, Germany, Sunday, June 19, 2022. There, the fire department has been fighting a forest fire for days. (Paul Zinken/dpa/dpa via AP)
            
              A cloud of smoke from the forest fire near Treuenbrietzen can be seen for miles across Lake Seddin, Germany, Sunday, June 19, 2022. There, the fire department has been fighting a forest fire for days.(Stephanie Pilick/dpa via AP)
            
              A police water cannon is in action in a forest fire in Treuenbrietzen, Germany, Sunday, June 19, 2022. The area affected by the forest fire in Treuenbrietzen near Berlin has expanded in the night to Sunday. (Thomas Schulz/dpa via AP)
            
              Firefighters eat watermelon during a break in San Martin de Unx in northern Spain, Sunday, June 19, 2022. Firefighters in Spain are struggling to contain wildfires in several parts of the country which as been suffering an unusual heat wave for this time of the year. (AP Photo/Miguel Oses)
            
              A neighbour helps firefighters in San Martin de Unx in northern Spain, Sunday, June 19, 2022. Firefighters in Spain are struggling to contain wildfires in several parts of the country which as been suffering an unusual heat wave for this time of the year. (AP Photo/Miguel Oses)
            
              Smoke rises from the hills in Ujue, northern Spain, Sunday, June 19, 2022. Firefighters in Spain are struggling to contain wildfires in several parts of the country which as been suffering an unusual heat wave for this time of the year. (AP Photo/Miguel Oses)
            
              Firefighters work in front of flames during a wildfire in the Sierra de la Culebra in the Zamora Provence on Saturday June 18, 2022. Thousands of hectares of wooded hill land in northwestern Spain have been burnt by a wildfire that forced the evacuation of hundreds of people from nearby villages. Officials said the blaze in the Sierra de Culebra mountain range started Wednesday during a dry electric storm. (Emilio Fraile/Europa Press via AP)
            
              A firefighter works in the San Martin de Unx area in northern Spain, Sunday, June 19, 2022. Firefighters in Spain are struggling to contain wildfires in several parts of the country which as been suffering an unusual heat wave for this time of the year. (AP Photo/Miguel Oses)
            
              Smoke rises over San Martin de Unx in northern Spain, Sunday, June 19, 2022. Firefighters in Spain are struggling to contain wildfires in several parts of the country which as been suffering an unusual heat wave for this time of the year. (AP Photo/Miguel Oses)

MADRID (AP) — Cooler temperatures helped firefighters Monday stabilize a wildfire in northwestern Spain that reports say is the biggest on record in the country.

The fire in the Sierra de Culebra mountain range in Zamora province has burnt 31,000 hectares (77,000 acres) so far. The state news agency Efe said that made it the biggest on record since a fire in southwestern Huelva province razed just under 30,000 hectares in 2004.

While the Zamora fire wasn’t under complete control, there are no longer flames and it’s no longer spreading, authorities said Monday.

A drop in soaring temperatures allowed for about 650 firefighters supported by water-dumping aircraft to establish a perimeter around the fire that started Wednesday. People from 18 villages had to be evacuated over the past week.

Elsewhere, 900 people were evacuated from 13 villages in the northern region of Navarra where two wildfires were still active.

Spain has been on alert for an outbreak of intense wildfires as the country last week experienced record temperatures in many places for June. Experts link the abnormally hot period for Europe to climate change.

In Germany, heavy showers overnight and on Monday helped largely extinguish two big forest fires about 20 kilometers (12½ miles) apart to the southwest of Berlin. Officials said hundreds of people were able to return to their homes after being evacuated as a precaution over the weekend. Roads also were reopened.

Hundreds of firefighters remained on the scene amid fears that wind could reignite smoldering embers.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Cooler weather helps Spain with fires; rain helps in Germany