“When we woke up this morning we saw clouds of smoke hanging over the hotel, but this was not an immediate cause for panic,” Rolf Oligschläger tells RTL News. “We just went swimming, but suddenly the fire alarm went off. We had to leave in a hurry.”
Alice Rumkins also had to flee from the fire. She and her family are on holiday in Rhodes for two weeks. “I didn’t fully trust him, because we saw the sky turn orange,” Reumkens told RTL Nieuws. They decided to pack up, and in no time came the message they had already dreaded: they had to leave.
“I was quickly able to toss some chargers into the bags,” says Reumkens. This morning she was still sitting on the beach with her family. There they were given water and wet towels. “But now the water is running out.”
With a large group of people now walking to the south side of the island. “We’re walking towards the blue sky,” says Reumkens. “There are now dark clouds of smoke to our left and right.” Returning to the hotel is not an option.
“There are no police anywhere to be seen, none at all. There are cars full of baggage,” Rumkins says. Let’s see what the situation looks like on Rhodes in this video:
Meanwhile, according to Reumkens, it’s still eerily quiet at the Corendon travel agency, where she’s booked. “We asked last night if we should be concerned, but they said no.”
200 guests from Corendon
In response, Corendon told RTL Nieuws that around 200 Corendon guests have been affected by the bushfires in Rhodes. They were evacuated from the affected area. A government spokesperson says: “This is done under government oversight. People are taken care of in specific locations, such as gyms.”
“We are currently looking for alternative accommodation for our guests who cannot return to their hotel at this time. We also offer these guests the option of returning to the Netherlands today or tomorrow.”
Dutchmen who are going to the Greek island today or tomorrow Corendon will communicate with them. “We offer them alternative accommodation, and if they would prefer to rebook their holiday to another destination, that is also possible.”
Previously, people in the center of the island, in forested, mountainous and sparsely populated areas, were called for evacuation. The southwest coast, where Reumkens was also with her family, must leave now as well. The fire was fueled further by the strong winds. Several European countries sent firefighting planes and/or firefighters to help extinguish the fire.
These include parts of Kiotari and Lardos, about 40 kilometers south of the island’s capital. According to local authorities, tourists are not in danger, but thousands of people are being evacuated. They are transported from shore to larger ships in small boats. Greek media reported it Three hotels on fire has flown.
In mainland Greece, it is feared that fires will break out again due to the drought and heat sweeping across the country in waves. The average temperature in Greece was 36.5 degrees on Friday, but above 40 degrees in many places. Locally it may be well above 40 degrees on Sunday.
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