SAN SEBASTIAN DE LA GOMERA (AP):
Morocco sent two water-bombing planes yesterday to help Spain battle a stubborn 10-day-old wildfire that has scorched nearly 10 per cent of the land on the Canary Island of La Gomera, including ancient woodlands.
The wildfires are the latest blazes in a summer forest fire season that has been one of the worst in recent memory for Spain and Portugal.
Drought-like conditions and high temperatures have made it extremely difficult for authorities to extinguish the fires. But Canary Island regional government spokeswoman Candelaria Ceballos said the extra planes and a drop in temperatures were raising hopes that firefighters might finally control the blazes that have burned 30 square kilometres (12 square miles) inside and outside the Garajonay National Park, a UNESCO world heritage site.
The addition of the Moroccan planes bumped the number of firefighting planes working at La Gomera up to seven, plus seven water-bombing helicopters. Each plane yesterday was landing like clockwork every 30 minutes or so on the ocean to pick up water, taking off to dump it on burning areas and then returning for more water.