A particularly violent fire on the Costa del Sol in southern Spain destroyed around 6,000 hectares of forest in just under four days, an area equivalent to more than 8,000 soccer fields. Because of the flames that had been blazing since Wednesday evening at the foot of the Sierra Bermeja mountain range in the Andalusia region, two other communities, Júzcar and Alpandeire, had to be evacuated on Sunday, as the emergency service announced. This increased the number of people who had to be brought out of their homes and to safety since Thursday to a total of 1620. It was not initially announced whether this included tourists.

"There has not been such a forest fire in Andalusia and probably also in Spain for years," said the Andalusian regional president Juanma Moreno.

Víctor Resco, professor of forest engineering at the University of Lleida, said on the radio that the cloud of fire was like a storm.

They can form new fire fronts through electrical discharges.

Such a forest fire is "impossible to fight".

Due to the complicated situation, the military emergency aid unit UME has been supporting the fire brigade and civil protection with the extinguishing work since Sunday.

According to official information, a total of 6,000 people were deployed in the affected region near the coastal community of Estepona and around 80 kilometers southwest of Málaga.

A 44-year-old firefighter died on Thursday.

The heat of up to 30 degrees, the dryness and strong winds made the fire extinguishing work difficult, it said. Because of the thick smoke, the AP7 motorway, which is also very busy with tourists in summer, had to be closed again and again in the past few days. The cause of the forest fire was initially unknown.