Home / World / Fires force thousands to evacuate French Riviera towns – CBS News

Fires force thousands to evacuate French Riviera towns – CBS News

People enjoy the beach as they look at a forest fire in La Croix-Valmer, near Saint-Tropez, on July 25, 2017.

Valery Hache / AFP/Getty Images

Last Updated Jul 26, 2017 6:00 AM EDT

PARIS — The top official of France’s Var region on the Mediterranean coast says that 10,000 people were evacuated as blazes hopscotching around the Riviera tore through the town of La Londe-les-Maures. Some were forced to sleep on the beach in Bormes-les-Mimosas to escape the flames, Britain’s Telegraph newspaper reported.

The prefecture said in a statement on Wednesday that a violent fire took off just before 11 p.m. the night before, and 540 firefighters were sent in to the region.

More than 4000 firefighters have been trying to tackle the blazes since Monday, the BBC reported. At least 12 of those have been injured, and 15 were dealing with the effects of smoke inhalation.

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People enjoy the beach as a fire burns a forest by the sea in La Croix-Valmer, near Saint-Tropez, southern France on July 25, 2017.

Valery Hache / AFP/Getty Images

The statement said that some 10,000 people – about 3,000 of them campers – were evacuated from La Londe and nearby Bormes and La Lavandou.

Four tracker planes and a fire-fighting aircraft were sent in. About 800 hectares of back-country forest had burned by morning.

Fires began raging along the coast on Monday, forcing smaller, scattered evacuations with flames reaching a corner of Saint-Tropez.

France had earlier asked other EU countries for help fighting the fires.

© 2017 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: world

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