Turkey wildfires: Terrifying footage shows crisis as clouds of smoke blanket Marmaris

WILDFIRES continued to rage across southern Turkey on Thursday, forcing many people to evacuate their homes.

Turkey: Wildfires billow smoke into the sky close to Marmaris

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Fires broke out in 16 new locations, including close to the resort of Marmaris in the Icmeler region, which briefly threatened holiday homes and hotels. Mehmet Oktay, the resort’s mayor, told NTV television that he could not rule out “sabotage” as the cause of the fire there. Since Wednesday, a total of 53 wildfires have been reported, although most have now been brought under control.

Authorities deployed around 4,000 firefighters to help contain the fires, along with 38 helicopters.

The fires have claimed the lives of at least three people and resulted in 58 hospitalisations, according to the government’s Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD).

Most of those in hospital were being treated for smoke inhalation.

The devastation wrought by the fires has been captured in numerous videos, circulating on social media.

Turkey wildfires

Turkey wildfires (Image: Getty)

Turkey wildfires

Turkey wildfires (Image: Getty)

Footage shows thick plumes of black acrid smoke billowing upwards and blotting out the sun, houses burning and firefighters desperately trying to put out fires.

In other scenes captured on film, planes can be seen dumping water from the skies in attempts to bring the conflagration under control.

In one spectacular night shot filmed from a helicopter, a whole hillside is turned orange by the raging fires.

READ MORE: US wildfires mapped: Apocalyptic wildfires burning – where are fires?

Turkey wildfires

Turkey wildfires (Image: Getty)

Turkey’s Mediterranean and Aegean regions often suffer from wildfires during the dry, hot summer months.

Authorities have on a number of occasions blamed the forest fires on arsonists and on outlawed Kurdish militants.

Fahrettin Altun, the Turkish presidential communications director, said on Twitter that “comprehensive investigations” had been launched into the causes of the fires.


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Turkey wildfires

Turkey wildfires (Image: Getty)

He added: “Those responsible will have to account for the attacks against nature and forests.”

Patrizia Under told the AP media agency that she and her friends were swimming in the sea in the Icmeler area, when they saw a fire blazing on a nearby mountainside.

“We got out of the sea and got into our car and left,” she said.

Harry Byrne

Harry Byrne

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