Manuel Miranda, the Island Councillor for Territorial Policy, Territorial Cohesion, and Water, delivered an announcement today regarding the progress of the Tenerife fire. This development has led to the upgrading of the risk status to Emergency Level 1, in accordance with the regulations set out by the Special Plan for Civil Protection and Emergency Response to Forest Fires in the Canary Islands (INFOCA).
This decision is the outcome of the recommendation put forth by the technical director of the INFOCA Plan, following discussions and consultations with the advisory committee and firefighting management. As of now, the responsibility for managing the emergency, resource intervention, and public communication falls under the jurisdiction of the Tenerife Island Council.
Since August 24, the fire has been successfully contained, implying that it is progressing within the predetermined lines of control as anticipated, and efforts are now focused on reaching complete control over the fire.
Given the favorable progress, the management of the plan has initiated the withdrawal of national land and air resources in recent days. This includes the seaplanes operated by the Ministry of Ecological Transition and Demographic Challenge (Miteco), the personnel from the Military Emergency Unit (UME), and the forestry brigades of BRIFOR.
The fire ignited on the night of August 15 at approximately 23:36 in the vicinity of the TF-523 road, situated between the municipalities of Arafo and Candelaria. Due to its size, during the early hours of the following morning, the Tenerife Island Council requested the elevation of the fire to level 2 as per the INFOCA protocol. Consequently, the Government of the Canary Islands assumed control of the emergency response.
Spanning a perimeter of 90 km, the affected area encompasses 14,751 hectares distributed across twelve municipalities: La Orotava, Candelaria, Arafo, Santa Úrsula, Los Realejos, Güímar, La Victoria, El Rosario, El Sauzal, Fasnia, Tacoronte, and La Matanza.
The firefighting operation engaged 22 aircraft, completing a total of 7,277 water discharges amounting to 13,103,700 liters of water used. More than 600 ground personnel, including intervention teams, security personnel, logistics teams, and volunteers, have also been involved.
During the most intense firefighting period, over 13,000 individuals were evacuated, with 1,300 taking refuge in the 10 designated shelters organized by local municipalities. Furthermore, 473 animals were sheltered in various centers.