Wildfires Along French Riviera Coast Force Evacuation of Thousands

Firefighters in France have intensified their efforts to control a wildfire that began sweeping through parts of the Riviera coast Tuesday night and forced the evacuation of thousands of people.

The fire is the most recent of several wind-fueled blazes that are consuming forests and scrublands between Marseilles and the city of Nice in southeastern France.

At the nearby marinas of Saint-Tropez resort, the fast-approaching fire prompted the evacuation of about 10,000 people, including 3,000 from campsites.

Hundreds of firefighters are battling the blaze, with planes and helicopters dropping tons of water on the area’s hilly terrain, where fires regularly break out during the summer season.

Fire began raging along the coast Monday, forcing smaller evacuations as flames approached a corner of Saint-Tropez. Firefighters also fought blazes farther east in Artigues and contained another Tuesday evening in La Croix Valmer.

So far, no deaths have been reported as a result of the blazes.

France’s Mediterranean coast is especially susceptible to wildfires because of its huge forests, dry summer conditions, and sea winds that fuel the flames.

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