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Firefighters combat blazes engulfing 163,100 hectares in Russian regions

Nearly 100 settlements in Siberia and the Far East are affected by smoke from the wildfires
Still from a video/Aerial Forest Protection Service/TASS
Still from a video/Aerial Forest Protection Service/TASS

MOSCOW, August 7. /TASS/. Firefighters are working on extinguishing wildfires in Russian regions on a territory of 163,100 hectares, the Aerial Forest Protection Service said on Wednesday.

"As of 12am on August 7, active firefighting efforts are underway to extinguish wildfires on a territory of 163,175 hectares in Russian regions, including 78 wildfires on an area of 110,082 hectares in the Irkutsk Region and 69 wildfires on an area of 46,976 hectares in the Krasnoyarsk Region," the service reported.

Firefighters are also dousing the flames in Yakutia, Buryatia, Amur, Tomsk and Chukotka regions. Nearly 3,800 people and 492 units of equipment are employed. The Emergencies Ministry’s jets have poured 929 tonnes of water on the fire hotbeds. The land-based airmobile task force involves 696 people and 39 pieces of equipment. Teams have been dispatched from the Tomsk Region to the Krasnoyarsk Region in order to put out fires in the 5-km zone within settlements.

A state of emergency over wildfires was declared throughout the Irkutsk and Kransnoyarsk regions and Yakutia, as well as in one district of Buryatia.

Meanwhile smoke from the wildfires has engulfed 93 settlements in Siberia and the Far East, and a total of 453 fire hotbeds have been reported across Russia, the Emergencies Ministry told TASS on Wednesday.

"According to the Aerial Forest Protection Service, 453 hotbeds of wildfires are still raging, 28 of which have been localized. The hardest-hit areas are in Yakutia and the Krasnoyarsk and Irkutsk regions, where smoke has hit 93 settlements," the ministry said.