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Spain: Firefighters battle blaze in protected nature area

August 1, 2018
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People cool off in the Arga River during a hot summer day, in Pamplona, northern Spain, Thursday, Aug. 1, 2018. Much of Spain is on alert as the country's weather agency warns that temperatures could surpass 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) due to a hot air mass moving northward from the African continent. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)

MADRID (AP) — Spanish authorities say two water-dropping planes and nine helicopters are helping firefighters tackle a fire in a protected nature area on the southern coast.

The firefighting service in Andalucia said 115 firefighters, including troops from a local military base, are working to tackle the blaze Wednesday at Punta Camarinal, near the port city of Cadiz.

Wind gusts of up to 55 kph (34 mph) are making it hard to contain the flames.

While other parts of Europe have seen unusually severe fires this summer, Spain has recorded so far this year the least amount of land scorched by wildfires in a decade.

The government says just over 10,400 hectares (25,700 acres) were charred as of July 22 — five times less than the average of the last 10 years.

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