VALPARAÍSO. – The death toll from the wildfires in Chile has risen to 112, authorities reported yesterday, while President Gabriel Boric assured that the country is facing a tragedy of “very large proportions” and that the number of victims will increase “significantly”. Disaster prevention and rescue work continues.
Most of the fire spread in the coastal region of Valparaíso, home to nearly a million residents, the seat of Congress and one of the country’s most important ports.
In a message to the nation, Boric added that he had made the decision to maintain the curfew and increase the military presence in the affected areas.
The mayor of Viña del Mar, Macarena Ripamonti, and the governor of the Valparaíso region, Rodrigo Mundaca, reported that several hundred people were reported missing.
“It is the greatest tragedy we have experienced since the 2010 earthquake,” the Chilean president said, referring to the magnitude 8.8 earthquake and subsequent tsunami on February 27 this year that killed more than 500 people lives came.
The Forensic Medical Service said that as of yesterday, 32 of the 99 victims had been identified; The number of houses affected is more than 3,000.
In addition to Valparaíso, the fire was active in the central regions of O’Higgins, Maule and Ñuble and La Araucanía.
The incident also forced the closure of the Aconcagua refinery, the country’s second largest north of Viña del Mar.
Mexican Foreign Minister Alicia Bárcena reported that “as an expression of the brotherhood that unites the people of Mexico and Chile,” she maintained contact with her counterpart from the South American country, Alberto van Klaveren, to “offer solidarity and assistance.” President Andres Manuel. Lopez Obrador.
My neighbors were burned,” says Abraham Mardones, who managed to escape from Villa Independencia, the epicenter of the wildfires. He says he had the “courage” to cover the body of one of them.
This 24-year-old welder and university student is still shaken by the charred corpses he saw in the blackened frames of houses and laments his demise.
The fire has consumed everything: memories, comfort, your home. I was left with what I was wearing, a single pair of overalls. All I could do was save my dog,” he told AFP.
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