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New wildfire risk in southwest France as heat wave continues

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Stephane Mahe and Manuel Ausloos

SAINT-MAGNE — Risk of new fires high in southwestern France as heat and drought worsen, officials say Friday said to After an overnight reprieve, the wildfires of monsters that had been raging for days were brought under control.

Firefighters from Germany, Romania and Greece have taken to the ground to help France fight fires in the Gironde region, home of Bordeaux wine, and on other fronts, including Brittany in the northwest. As well, all of Europe was on their way.

The Gironde department said the risk of new fires was "very serious" given the weather conditions.

"The day is likely to be complicated as temperatures continue to rise and humidity continues to drop, so it is clear that we remain vigilant and mobilized," local officials said. 's Ronan Leistik said at a press conference.

According to France's official weather forecaster Meteor France, a maximum temperature of 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) is expected in the southwest, with high temperatures expected for most of France.

It was officially his third heat wave in France this summer, but it was expected to subside on Saturday and end in a storm on Sunday.

About 7,400 hectares (18,000 acres) of forest burned in the Gironde, displacing 10,000 people.

Wildfires raged across Europe this summer as a series of heatwaves devoured the continent and renewed focus on the risks of climate change to industry and livelihoods.

Massive wildfires raged overnight and plunged into his seventh day in central Portugal on Friday. More than 1,600 firefighters, supported by his nine hydrogen bombers, were fighting the flames that destroyed about 15% of the Estrela Mountains. park.

After starting in the Covilha area on Saturday, the fires spread to several neighboring municipal councils, burning about 15,000 hectares (37,000 acres) in all.

Meanwhile, water levels on Germany's Rhine have fallen again, rendering some ships unable to navigate, shippers and brokers said.

British households are also facing new water use restrictions, and drought is likely to be declared in parts of the UK, prompting governments, environmental officials, Water companies are meeting to discuss the lingering hot, dry weather.

Politicians across the continent are assessing its impact.

"This year's fire season is not over yet," centrist French senator and former firefighter Pascal Martin told Europe 1 radio.

"Two lessons must be learned here. That is that the fires are spreading geographically and over time, no longer just in the south, but throughout the country, even in the Jura and Brittany. It is no longer just during the summer."

(Reported by Myriam Rivet, Manuel Ausloos, Stephane Mahe, Geert de Clercq, Farouq Suleiman, Andrei Khalip, Michael Hogan; Ingrid Melander Written and edited by Alison Williams)