Hundreds of firefighters are fighting two large forest fires in south-west Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. They also watered the ground around the fires at night to prevent the flames from spreading further.

According to the authorities, around 100 hectares of forest on the former Lübtheen military training area were on fire late in the evening. The fire came dangerously close to Volzrade, so the authorities evacuated the houses there. Around 160 people had to spend the night with friends, relatives or in the Lübtheen gym.

According to information from the district of Ludwigslust-Parchim, around 35 hectares burned in the Viezer Heide near Hagenow – also a former military site with soil contaminated with ammunition. There were detonations. A armored recovery vehicle from the Bundeswehr is to widen fire protection aisles there today.

Disaster declared for Lübtheen

Prime Minister Manuela Schwesig (SPD) wants to get an idea of ​​the situation in Lübtheen in the morning. Environment Minister Till Backhaus (SPD) and Interior Minister Christian level (SPD) arrived yesterday.

District Administrator Stefan Sternberg (SPD) declared the disaster for Lübtheen. He said they hoped the armored ring road at the military training area would hold up as a barrier to fire. The 30-kilometre-long, vegetation-free ring road, which partially encloses the former military training area, was widened after the first major fire there in 2019.

According to the authorities, the situation in Hagenow is relatively stable compared to Lübtheen. The fire is not under control there either, said a district spokesman. A detached house with two residents near this fire was evacuated due to heavy smoke.

Forest fires also in other regions of Germany

In 2019, the largest forest fire in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania to date, covering an area of ​​almost 1000 hectares, took place on the military training area near Lübtheen. More than 3,000 firefighters fought the flames for almost a week. From this fire there is still a lot of dead wood in the forest, which is burning massively, it was said. The heat from the fire is greater than in 2019 and is penetrating deeper into the ground. It detonates old ammunition where nothing was actually expected.

There have also been forest fires in other regions of Germany in the past few days. In Hesse – also on Monday afternoon – a forest fire broke out on the Altkönig mountain northwest of Frankfurt. According to the Hochtaunuskreis, the extinguishing work was difficult due to the nature of the terrain. As of Monday, however, the forest fire near Jüterbog south of Berlin was largely contained. The fire there broke out at the end of May on a former military training area.

The forest fire risk index of the German Weather Service (DWD) has been showing alarming red to dark red spots on the map of Germany for days. The danger is particularly great in the northeast, where the highest warning level five applies in many places.