UPDATE: Forest fire in Las Hurdes region of Extremadura declared ‘stabilised’

Image of the forest fire in the Las Hurdes region of Extremadura.

Image of the forest fire in the Las Hurdes region of Extremadura. Credit: Twitter@JuntaEx112

UPDATE: Sunday, May 21 at 6:20pm

According to the INFOEX Twitter profile, the forest fire burning in the Las Hurdes region of Extremadura was declared ‘stabilised’ at 10:45 am this morning, Sunday, May 21.

In a tweet, it posted: “10:45 a.m. |  The @PLANINFOEX deactivates level 2 of danger after the good evolution of #IFPinofranqueado .  Stabilized and at level 1 of Infoex.  Infocaex situation 2 is maintained by continuing the preventive evacuation of Ovejuela”.

However, as they pointed out, the preventive evacuation of the population of Ovejuela continued. That is the area where the flames remained most active. The Emergency Military Unit (EME) withdrew its personnel from the area once today’s work was finished.

It tweeted: “With the withdrawal of troops our intervention ends in #IFPinofranqueado A pleasure to work together with all the emergency services @PLANINFOEX. THANK YOU #Extremadura for the expressions of affection”.


UPDATE: Friday, May 19 at 6:10pm

According to the latest reports, the forest fire that is currently burning in the Las Hurdes region of Extremadura has now destroyed between 7,500 and 8,000 hectares.

The blaze has now reached the Sierra de Gata mountain range in the north of Caceres province. As explained by Guillermo Fernández Vara, the President of the Junta de Extremadura, “the wind is the worst enemy”.

He reiterated his belief that the fire was started deliberately, adding that whoever ignited it: “knew very well what he was doing, how he was doing it, and when he was doing it”. The blaze was started just before nightfall which made efforts to respond and extinguish it more difficult.

It is said to still be ‘out of control’ and is said to have worsened ‘notably’ since yesterday. Four residential areas of Descargamaría, Robledillo, Cadalso, and Ovejuela, with a total of around 700 people already evacuated as a precaution.

Video footage posted on the Disaster News Telegram channel showed the ferocity of the flames as the trees burned.

Begoña García Berna, the Minister of Agriculture, Rural Development, Population and Territory of the Junta de Extremadura presided over a meeting of the Centre for Coordination and Cooperation today, Friday 19.


At 2pm this afternoon, there were 14 aerial resources fighting the blaze from above. They are being assisted by 10 heavy machines from Extremadura, Castilla y León, and Castilla la Mancha along with 15 SEPEI and CPEI vehicles.

On the ground, a total of 23 units of firefighters are combatting the spread of the flames.

Two Cruz Roja BLS (basic life support units) have been installed in Pinofranqueado. A total of 14 Guardia Civil patrols are also working in the area, with another 6 from USECIC and 3 traffic patrols.


Thursday, May 18 at 8:21pm

The forest fire that broke out yesterday, Wednesday, May 17, in the Cáceres municipality of Pinofranqueado, has been upgraded to Level 2. 

Due to the seriousness of the flames spreading rapidly in the Las Hurdes region, this decision was made at 2pm this afternoon, Thursday 18, by the Junta de Extremadura. They also requested the assistance of the Military Emergency Unit (UME).

Level 2 was activated as a standard protocol of the Special Plan for Civil Protection of forest fires in Extremadura (INFOCAEX). This was because of the potential risk to properties in the nearby towns of Robledo, Avellanar, and La Muela.

An Advanced Command Post has been established to allow officials to monitor the progress of the blaze.

According to PLANINFOEX, the fire is ‘out of control’ due to the strong and changing gusts of wind. the fire is described as being ‘out of control’ due to the ‘strong and changing’ gusts of wind’.


Teams from the UME were deployed from Torrejón Air Base in Madrid to help combat the blaze. This includes 50 military personnel and six fire appliances.

They will be joined by an EC 135 helicopter from the Emergency Helicopter Battalion (BHELEME). A team of drones will join them, which will operate at night after the main aerial resources are withdrawn for the day.

There are currently 10 aerial means from the Junta de Extremadura tackling the fire. These are complemented by resources from the Government of Castilla y León and the Ministry for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge.

In total, with another 17 units working on the ground, there are ‘more than 120 people working’ to extinguish the flames.

According to Canal Extremadura, José Luis Azabal, the Mayor of Pinofranqueado, suggested that the fire could have been started intentionally. At least two locations have been identified as probable sources of the blaze, as reported by 20minutos.es.

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com