Greek Island Wildfire: More Than 10,000 British Tourists Stuck As Wildfire Sweeps The Greek Island

credit: theepochtimes

London (Parliament Politic Magazine) – According to a Foreign Office minister, there are currently up to 10,000 British tourists on Rhodes, as wildfires continue to spread across various areas of the Greek island.

In response to this situation, repatriation flights have commenced, bringing back hundreds of British holidaymakers from Rhodes.

 Additionally, sea evacuations are being carried out at a beach in Corfu to transport individuals who are seeking refuge from the wildfires on that particular Greek island.

The British government is actively working to ensure the safety and well-being of its citizens affected by these wildfires.

Thousands Of People Forced To Sleep On Beaches and Rough Floors

The repatriation efforts are underway as numerous individuals were compelled to endure a weekend of sleeping outdoors on beaches, sun loungers, or even on the streets due to the devastating wildfires that swept across Rhodes. A British mother has shared her harrowing experience of being evacuated from a hotel in Rhodes, which tragically succumbed to the flames, along with her partner and their two-year-old daughter.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has advised vacationers affected by wildfires to maintain communication with their tour operators. Additionally, UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly has announced the deployment of a Rapid Deployment Team consisting of Foreign Office and Red Cross responders to Rhodes, offering support to British citizens.

This development coincides with the insights of a wildfires expert from Swansea University, who highlights the consequences of mismanagement of land and the impact of climate change. These factors have contributed to the creation of highly combustible environments on Greek islands, potentially leading to similar devastating fires spreading across Crete.

Holiday Makers Start To Return Back To The UK

Holidaymakers have started to make their way back to the UK, as travel company Tui successfully brought its first group of British tourists home on three dedicated flights overnight. The company is now diligently working to ensure the safe return of all its customers. In a statement, Tui assured that their teams will promptly communicate any updates to the affected individuals.

To prioritize the well-being of their passengers, Tui has canceled all outbound flights to Rhodes until Tuesday. Passengers who were scheduled to travel on these flights will receive full refunds, providing them with some peace of mind during this uncertain time.

In a similar vein, Jet2 also conducted its initial repatriation flight from Rhodes to the UK on Sunday evening. This flight transported 95 passengers, who were then safely brought into Leeds Bradford Airport.

As the travel industry navigates through these challenging circumstances, both Tui and Jet2 are committed to ensuring the safety and comfort of their customers. By promptly addressing the situation and providing necessary assistance, these companies are working diligently to alleviate any concerns and facilitate a smooth return for holidaymakers.

Three Additional Flights From Rhodes To Take Off

The tour operator has officially announced that it will be conducting three additional repatriation flights from Rhodes to facilitate the return of customers to the United Kingdom tonight.

The flight bound for Manchester will accommodate 220 seats, while the flights to Leeds Bradford Airport and Birmingham will each have a capacity of 189 seats.

In addition to these repatriation efforts, Jet2 has also expressed its commitment to bolstering its presence on the island.

Furthermore, EasyJet has taken the initiative to organize two repatriation flights from Rhodes on Monday, supplementing the nine existing flights that already operate between Rhodes and the UK. This commendable effort will provide an additional 421 seats to ensure the safe evacuation of individuals.

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Island Of Rhodes Heavily Affected By Wildfire

In recent weeks, Greece has been grappling with scorching temperatures surpassing 40C, resulting in devastating fires that have ravaged homes and now threaten resorts along the eastern coast of the island. As a result, numerous tourists have been compelled to flee their hotels, leaving their belongings behind and resorting to sleeping outdoors.

The island of Rhodes has been particularly affected, as fierce winds have fueled the flames since Tuesday. This dire situation has prompted the evacuation of approximately 19,000 individuals, marking the largest operation of its kind ever undertaken by Greek authorities.

Meanwhile, on the distant island of Corfu, located approximately 1,027km (670 miles) away, around 2,500 people have also been forced to evacuate due to the fires, according to a spokesperson from the fire department who spoke to the AFP news agency.

Beth Malcolm

Beth Malcolm is Scottish based Journalist at Heriot-Watt University studying French and British Sign Language. She is originally from the north west of England but is living in Edinburgh to complete her studies.