Friday, August 5, 2022

Fires from blasts in Germany’s forest mostly contained, officials say

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Officials have not said what exactly triggered Thursday’s explosions or if the fire itself caused ammunition, firecrackers and other explosives at the depot to ignite. The depot is a Cold War-era facility in West Berlin.

Aug 5 (News) — A fire in Berlin’s Grunewald forest has been largely contained, officials said on Friday, after the forest was set ablaze by several large explosions at a local munitions dump.

The fire has scorched nearly 4 hectares and was fought by more than 100 firefighters, the Berlin Fire Department said.

Although there were no houses nearby, authorities set up an 800m perimeter to cordon off the area and planned to use robots and armored vehicles to assess any further danger. They also closed nearby roads and railroads.

The Berlin fire department director Karsten Homrighausen said on Friday that the situation was still threatening.

“It’s going to take some time to get everything under control,” she said, according to CNN.

Flying debris prevented responders from getting too close to the depot to douse the remaining flames. Local officials called the German army for assistance.

Dry conditions and extreme heat added to the effort as the country endured one of the hottest days on record.

Berlin officials had previously recognized the danger of controlled demolitions at the site but were unsuccessful in their efforts to remove them from the forest.

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