"There are people who are homeless and there are people being displaced. The fire is progressing towards Orjais and could advance towards Senhora do Carmo", said Vítor Pereira, mayor of Covilhã council, regarding the fire that restarted yesterday evening in Serra da Estrela.
The displaced people are from a family, whose house was hit by the fire, in the locality of Vale Formoso, in the Union of Parishes of Vale Formoso and Aldeia do Souto, Covilhã, in the district of Castelo Branco.
The mayor of Covilhã explained to journalists that Senhora do Carmo "is a mountain range with many houses", and therefore called on citizens to "respect the authorities".
"To the citizens of Covilhã that live in these surroundings – please keep as calm as possible, I know it's very difficult to leave your properties, but if the fire approaches your house, please go to the civil protection agents. And as soon as things calm down, return to your homes, as calmly as possible", he asked.
Vítor Pereira said that, throughout Monday, some people had taken the decision to abandon their homes, "others had to be convinced”.
"In Teixoso, we have used a School, where people are being sheltered, and there were 35 registered last night. Some have already moved to the homes of family and friends, but we still have people there at the school," he said.
Regarding the total damages, Sérgio Costa, mayor of Guarda municipality, also pointed out "that there may be some damage to second homes and some agricultural warehouses", but reminded that a survey is being carried out, as well as the "many telecommunications posts that were burnt or that collapsed".
"The reservoirs ended up lowering their level, so we reinforced them with other tanks, even from the municipality. And the telecommunications are in place, as is the electricity, which was missing in some places, because of the posts that collapsed or the lines that were cut. And now we have to give time to time, and in the shortest period of time, these infrastructures will hopefully all be restored", he concluded.
The fire reactivated on Monday, after having been reported as dominated on Saturday.
The fire, which broke out in Garrocho, in the municipality of Covilhã, in Castelo Branco district, spread to the district of Guarda, in the municipalities of Manteigas, Gouveia, Guarda and Celorico da Beira.