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Last Updated: Monday, 6 August 2007, 13:11 GMT 14:11 UK
Dubrovnik fires: Your experiences
Fires outside Dubrovnik (Pic: Mike Lord)
Mike Lord took this picture from the old town area of the city
Firefighters in Croatia appear to have brought a major forest fire on the outskirts of Dubrovnik under control. The flames had threatened its suburbs and prompted some tourists to flee the historic port city.

Here readers describe the blazes and the efforts of emergency services to control them.

MIKE LORD, DUBROVNIK

These fires have been continuing since Saturday.

Many people staying in our hotel were desperate to leave but couldn't as the airport road was closed.

It has reopened now and many are leaving, including my family and I, who just travelled on it on our way back to the UK.

On the way to the airport all we could see were burnt trees and scorched earth.

The ground was still smoking and the fire had jumped the road and burnt down everything in its path down to the sea.

There was a complete blanket of smoke and haze outside our hotel in the old town.

We couldn't open our windows as the smell of smoke was choking.

The smoke cloud sat over the mountains like a huge veil and hot ash was falling on our balcony.

Fire on the outskirts of Dubrovnik
We also heard around a half-dozen loud bangs throughout the night, which I learned this morning were exploding mines, left over from the war
Mike Lord
Planes were flying over, dropping gallons of water onto the hillside on the outskirts of the city.

There was a ridge about three or four miles long that was on fire and a bright orange colour all night.

It was pretty spectacular and I've never seen anything like it before.

We also heard around a half-dozen loud bangs throughout the night, which I learned this morning were exploding mines, left over from the war.

Many of the staff in our hotel were very upset and worried about their families living near the fires.

Two of them went home overnight and thankfully their homes were saved.

However, many were still sad this morning and concerned for their homes and loved ones.

The fires got closer and closer to the old town, but thankfully the wind changed and blew it in the other direction.

The firefighters were very stretched and appeared to be struggling to manage the fires.

PETER SARA, EVESHAM, UK, LEFT DUBROVNIK ON SUNDAY

Due to the airport road being shut, my family and I had to take a boat around the port, where we were met by a bus, which brought us the rest of the journey.

From the water we could see just how bad it was.

There was thick smoke and ash everywhere.

The wind kept changing direction, which made it very hard for the firefighters to contain it.

Along the way, we could see people on top of apartment buildings spraying hoses from their roofs in an effort to fend off the blaze.

The old town escaped the worst of it, but it was blowing in the other direction towards other small towns outside Dubrovnik.

The fire was burning quite quickly as it picked up speed with the help of the strong winds.

It was a real ordeal getting out.

We came from the floods in England to the fires in Dubrovnik, so now we would just like some normality.




VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Mobile phone footage of the forest fire



SEE ALSO
Dubrovnik fire threat subsiding
06 Aug 07 |  Europe



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