LISBON, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 10th August, 2016) : Three people were killed, two seriously hurt and around a thousand forced to flee overnight as fires ravaged the Portuguese holiday island of Madeira, reaching the capital Funchal, rescuers said Wednesday. The three victims died in their homes close to the town's historic centre, while a hotel overlooking the town was destroyed and other buildings were licked by flames, officials said.
"Last night, the fire was a hundred metres (yards) away from the hotel and you could hear gas bottles exploding," Ricardo Correia, a manager at the hotel Castanheiro, told AFP. "We evacuated our 140 guests as a precaution," Correia said, explaining they had spent the night in a sports stadium on the western side of the town. "The situation was calmer this morning and the clients are progressively returning," Correia said. The president of the Madeira region, Miguel Albuquerque, said the fire was still burning on several fronts but was "under control." "The situation is complex but not catastrophic," he told a press conference.