Sieben Inseln
4/25/2019 (updated: 8/20/2023) | 6min Reading time

Forest fire in Tenerife



Another forest fire August 2023 on the north-eastern flank of Tenerife

I last reported on a large forest fire on Tenerife on the southern flank of Mount Teide in April 2018 (see below). Since then, there have been fires from time to time on Tenerife and also on the other Canary Islands. The last fire was in the west of La Palma in July 2023 and destroyed many hectares of forest there. But the fire that has been raging on the island of Tenerife since the evening of Tuesday 15 August is particularly large and has also personally affected a great many people who had to be evacuated. And since I keep receiving enquiries from people about the current status of the fire, I would like to leave a short summary of the events with current links here.
the area affected by the fire in Tenerife
the area affected by the fire in Tenerife
The island of Tenerife is battling a forest fire that is currently spreading even further. As of 20 August 2023, the fire in the north-east of the largest Canary Island, which started on Tuesday night between the municipalities of Arafo and Candelaria, has now covered an area of more than 26 square kilometres and is affecting six municipalities on the island. 3,800 people have been brought to safety. The Red Cross has set up many emergency shelters in gymnasiums. The fire, which originated on the eastern flank, has spread across Cumbre Dorsal to the western side into the Orotava Valley. Much of the island is covered in clouds of smoke and ash. Columns of smoke several kilometres high are rising from the fire, as many pictures and films posted on social media show. Meanwhile, the president of the Canary Islands has confirmed that the forest fire on Tenerife started due to arson. The fires are among the worst in the history of the Canary Islands. The Guardia Civil police are investigating.
Picture of the fire - Diario de Avisos
Picture of the fire - Diario de Avisos
If you speak Spanish, you can also read about the fire in the Diario de Avisos and El Día.

Forest fire on Tenerife – 10 April 2018

The forest fire on the south flank of the Teide should still not be under control on the east side. The fire brigade, military and forestry workers are still in action. So far more than 330 hectares of forest and green space have been burned. Some media express the suspicion of arson. But the exact investigation on how the forest fire developed will probably remain reserved for the final investigations.

Forest fire on Tenerife – as of 9 April 2018 evening

Meanwhile, the flames have destroyed 220 hectares of forest and green space on the island of Tenerife. This morning it was still 30 hectares. Now in the beginning night it is already 190 hectares more. The Environment Minister of the Cabildo de Tenerife José Antonio Valbuena announces that the fire is not yet under control. But there are no villages or agricultural areas acutely endangered. It is necessary to wait and see how the fire will develop at night and in the early hours of the morning.

Forest fire in Tenerife – 9 April 2018 afternoon

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Also this afternoon, the internet and news agencies report that the forest fires on Tenerife are still out of control. According to Tenerife News, the flames are now eating their way through the undergrowth on two fronts. The fire brigade, military and forestry workers are fighting the flames. Units from Gran Canaria are also on site. In the afternoon, the island government announced that more than 100 hectares of green space (pine forest, bushes) had already been destroyed.
The first flame front is said to be located between the municipalities of Granadilla and Vilaflor. The second fire roller is active three kilometres away from Arico. According to Tenerife News, it is hoped that the fires will be brought under control on Monday.

Forest fire on the southern flank of the Teiden National Park – as of 9 April 2018 in the morning

On 9 April 2018, several Spanish Internet services reported a forest fire in Tenerife. Since Sunday night, April 8, 2018, parts of the Teide National Park on Tenerife have been on fire. That’s when the fire was reported for the first time in the late evening. So far, approximately 30 hectares of forest in the Chasna region around the municipalities of Granadilla de Abona and Arico have been affected. Firefighters and helpers from the entire island of Tenerife are on duty. The access to the Barranco Madre del Agua of Vilaflor is closed. The currently strong wind is having an unfavorable effect on the development of the fire.

Forest fire – cause?

The fire in the Barranco de Madre del Agua is said to have broken out. From there it moved quickly towards the inhabited area of the municipality of Vilaflor. Fortunately, there have been no injuries so far. And also houses had not been destroyed so far. But there is still no statement from the police about the cause.
Read more about the current development: Tenerife News.


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