Pefki threatened as enormous blaze devours forests

Enormous flames devoured pristine forests and encroached on villages Sunday on Greece's second-largest island.

Pillars of billowing smoke and ash turned the sky a dark orange and blocked out the sun above Evia, triggering more evacuation alerts.

The fire on Evia, an island of forested mountains and canyons laced with small coves of crystalline water, began Aug. 3 and cut across the popular summer destination from coast to coast as it burned out of control.

Scores of homes and businesses have been destroyed and thousands of residents and tourists have fled, many escaping the flames via flotillas that even operated in the dark of night.