A major wildfire in eastern Cuba threatening hundreds as it nears national park
HAVANA, Feb 21st A major wildfire in eastern Cuba was spreading closer to a national park on Monday, threatening hundreds of residents in its path, Cuban state television said Monday.Firefighters were attempting to control the blaze that started this weekend in the mountainous Pinares de Mayari region in Cuba’s Holguin province, some 800 kilometers (500 miles) east of the capital Havana, with strong winds and dry conditions fueling its rapid spread.
The flames have already consumed more than 150 hectares (371 acres) of land and prompted the evacuation of about 600 residents from the small towns of Vivero 2, Pueblo Nuevo and La Mensura.
Local media reported on Monday that the fire was approaching the Mensura-Piloto National Park, which occupies an area of around 8,480 hectares (20,955 acres).
Television footage showed large plumes of smoke and fire rising from the forest.
Cuba reported 80 wildfires in January, according to reports from the park ranger service.