Wildfire raging on Hymettus mountain in Athens, houses evacuated

Houses have been evacuated as a precautionary measure after a wildfire erupted on Hymettus mountain here on Monday, according to a Fire Service announcement.

The blaze started during the night, as Greek authorities have declared red alert for fires raging across the country since Saturday due to strong winds and high temperatures.

A total of 63 wildfires broke out nationwide during the weekend, and 875 firemen assisted by nine water dropping airplanes and 11 helicopters were deployed to extinguish them, the Fire Service said.

Greece faces destructive wildfires every summer. Many are linked to heatwaves and arson.

A wildfire which swept through a seaside resort 30 km east of Athens in July 2018 resulted in 102 casualties.