The fire brigade is fighting a forest fire on the state border of Brandenburg and Saxony. Two towns were evacuated. Part of the area is an old military training area.

A fire on the state border of Saxony and Brandenburg has eaten further and further into the country on Friday.

“We are now assuming a total area of ​​800 hectares in both countries, about half in Saxony and half in Brandenburg,” said Ralf Meier from the Brandenburg police on Friday evening. The villages of Kosilenzien and Kröbeln in the Elbe-Elster district on the Brandenburg side were evacuated. They belong to the town of Bad Liebenwerda. It was initially unclear how many people had to leave their homes.

There has never been a similarly large forest fire in the area, said the spokeswoman for the Zeithain fire brigade, Dorit Riedel. “We’ve never had anything like this here in recent years.” The extinguishing work in Gohrischheide was made more difficult because some of the areas involved were munitions and the areas cannot be entered. “It’s an old military training ground. Emergency services who were on site reported that there were always small explosions, »said Riedel.

The fire broke out on Thursday in the north of the Meissen district in Saxony. The fire seemed to be under control for a while, but the wind fanned it again and made it bigger. The police asked to drive around the area. Residents should keep windows closed.

More relaxed again in Saxony

At least on the Saxon side, according to the fire brigade, the situation eased by Friday evening. There are no longer any large-scale flames and the fire is under control for the time being, said operations manager Matthias Heydel from the Zeithain fire brigade. A helicopter was also involved. “The worst is done for now.” The number of emergency services in Saxony should be significantly reduced overnight, but fire guards should continue to keep an eye on the situation. Further extinguishing work would then be tackled on Saturday. According to the information, around 160 emergency services were on the road.

The major damage situation was declared on the Brandenburg side. The fire brigade is trying to get the situation under control with a fire-fighting helicopter, thermal imaging cameras and a large number of emergency services, said the Elbe-Elster district fire chief, Steffen Ludewig. Constantly changing winds would have further fueled the fires. “We’re trying to organize and stabilize the situation.” In addition, fire brigades from the Spree-Neisse district were requested. Emergency services from Cottbus were also on their way to the scene of the fire with three tank fire engines, a command vehicle and a crew transporter. According to the Lausitz regional control center, more than a hundred emergency services are on site.

The fire brigade cannot rely on greater relief from rain: There could be isolated showers in the region on Friday evening and during the day on Saturday, said Peter Zedler from the German Weather Service in Leipzig on request. Presumably, however, they would not bring any large amounts of precipitation.

Just last weekend, two forest fires in Treuenbrietzen and Beelitz, south of Berlin, posed a great danger. Hundreds of firefighters, supported by Bundeswehr soldiers, were deployed. About 200 hectares were in flames at a time. Firefighters continue to monitor developments there.