Death toll rises in Chile inferno

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Death toll rises in Chile inferno

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In Chile, at least 13 people are now known to have died in a massive fire in the port city of Valparasio. Thousands of residents have been made homeless by the blaze.

Despite more than 1,200 firefighters and dozens of aircraft deployed to battle the inferno, flames ripped through some 2000 homes.

The fire started on Saturday and has been fuelled by strong coastal winds.

Located some 135 kilometres northwest of the capital Santiago, Valparaiso’s steep hills and closely spaced houses, many of them wood, make it difficult to combat fires

Overseeing the emergency response Chile’s President Michelle Bachelet, vowed to rebuild the city having earlier declared the area a disaster zone.

In all some 10,000 residents have been forced to flee their homes.

Officials have warned it could take nearly three weeks to fully extinguish forest fires surrounding the city.