Portugal battles major wildfire in Algarve region


(AP) — Emergency services in Portugal say they are still fighting a major wildfire on the south coast that threatened to engulf a hillside town overnight.
The Civil Protection Agency said Monday that 44 people required medical assistance as the blaze passed by the outskirts of Monchique, 250 kilometers (155 miles) south of Lisbon, in the dark. A 72-year-old woman was seriously hurt.
Authorities said that more than 1,000 firefighters with 327 vehicles and seven aircraft were battling the blaze.
The wind-driven fire has raced across tinder-dry pine and eucalyptus forest in a largely inaccessible hill range behind the famous beaches of Portugal’s Algarve vacation region.
Plumes of black smoke have blown across beaches popular with European tourists.
Firefighters expect forecast cooler temperatures to help them bring the fire under control.