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France on fire: Evacuate amid record heat

PARIS –

New wildfires raging in southwestern France have ripped through more than 1,000 hectares of land and forced people to evacuate amid record-breaking September temperatures.

Fires that began on Monday have forced more than 500 people to evacuate in the Gironde region, as a smaller blaze burned south of Bordeaux, near Dax, where temperatures reached 39°C (102°C). .

Strong winds hampered the efforts of hundreds of firefighters, who struggled to put out the blaze overnight into Tuesday without success. The fires have not yet been extinguished.

Two Canadianair firefighting planes – which have been significantly active during the hot summer months in southern France – have been deployed to help, along with helicopters and a Dash aircraft.

French weather agency Meteo France announced on Monday that it had recorded record temperatures for September – particularly in the southwest due to a heatwave rising from Morocco. Mercury hits 39.1 degrees Celsius (102.4 degrees Fahrenheit) in the Southwest Landes region.

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