[WATCH] Firefighters struggling to contain fire in Miżieb woodland

The fire broke out earlier in the day but despite the Civil Protection Department’s best efforts it has still not been extinguished

Credit - Steve Cutajar
Credit - Steve Cutajar

Members of the Civil Protection Department are currently working to extinguish a fire which broke out in the Miżieb woodland in the outskirts of Mellieħa.

The fire broke out on Saturday morning, with firefighters arriving on site soon after. The fire is believed to have been caused by the heat.

A spokesperson for the Civil Protection Department confirmed that nobody had been injured in the incident. They said that efforts to control the fire were still under way.

They said that a unit had also been dispatched to Buskett to control a smaller fire there.

Members of the St John’s Rescue Corps were also called in to assist firefighters in today’s operation.  

Reacting to the news of the fire, BirdLife Malta said it was saddened that the fire had been engulfing the woodland since the early hours of the day.

“Apart from the fact that Miżieb is one of the few areas with dense trees in our country, it also serves as a resting place for various birds during migration, and is an ideal place for people to visit and enjoy themselves,” BirdLife said.

It said it had written to the Environment Minister to offer the NGOs support in the area’s regeneration process.  

“We are hoping that the damage is not as extensive as we are expecting after seeing footage of the ordeal. We will be seeking ways of working closely with the respective entities in helping to regenerate the area to its natural state as fast as possible.” BirdLife CEO Mark Sultana said.

BirdLife said it was also insisted that similar areas have proper contingency plans for such incidents in order to minimise the damage.