Chile prepares big evacuation as blazing forest fire damages around 200 homes

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    A disastrous forest fire in Chile has led to the tragic destruction of almost 200 homes.

    The inferno, which took place in the Viña del Mar region of the South American country, has forced dozens of residents to leave their homes in search for safety.

    The fire has described as advancing "rapidly" in the area.

    READ MORE:Firefighters evacuate more than 1,000 people over London gas main rupture

    According to a Vineyard Fire Commander, residents have been urged to stay away as not to interfere with the firefighters' work.

    Chile's National Forest Corporation (CONAF) said the blaze "remains active with rapid propagation, high intensity and spread of sparks".

    The National Emergency Office of the Ministry of Interior (Onemi) announced in a statement: "Due to a forest fire, it is requested to evacuate sectors Puerto Montt, Puerto Aysen, Cabritera, Forestal Alto and Toma Felipe Camiroaga in the city of Viña del Mar."

    The Onemi also put out Due to the seriousness of the inferno, a red alert in the area has been issued by the Onemi which has allowed the emergency services to respond as quickly as possible.

    Alongside the many houses that have been destroyed, a total of 15 hectares of vegetation has also been incinerated.

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    Further advice given to residents by the Onemi include using the likes of T-shirts and masks to cover their faces as to protect themselves from inhaling smoke fumes.

    People were asked to evacuate along with Residents were also told to take their household pets with them when they evacuate and not to return to their homes until they are notified by authorities that the area is safe for them to come back.

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