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Fires sweep across Portugal & France

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Fires sweep across Portugal & France


Portugal is suffering its hottest August in years, and as of Tuesday morning 19 separate fires were raging in the north of the country.

Temperatures above 40 Celsius have been recorded almost everywhere and the mercury hit 43 in Lisbon on Monday. Fourteen out of 18 districts have been placed on maximum fire alert.

The flames are being fanned by strong winds which are often re-igniting blazes put out by the struggling firefighters, 1500 of whom are working round the clock.

France is also feeling the heat in the south where fires have destroyed several houses in the northern suburbs of Montpellier.

Fire crews fought the flames throughout Monday night before bringing them under control.

Smoke forced the A50 motorway to close between Cassis and La Ciotat, and the departments of Herault and Bouches du Rhone remain on high alert.

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