Minister of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection Vassilis Kikilias announced in a statement on Greek TV late on Saturday afternoon that “after 2.5 hours, the fire on Mt. Parnitha has no active front, with only scattered hotspots that will be dealt with throughout the night.”

He commended the massive effort and rapid mobilization of the fire department, the police, the municipal authorities, forest rangers and volunteers, but emphasized that “the battle isn’t over.”

The wildfire had broken out in the Katsimidi forest area, a part of the Parnitha mountain at around 3:30 pm on Saturday afternoon.

Fire respondents both on the ground and in the air rushed to contain the blaze as gale-force winds up to 9 Beaufort enlarged and rapidly spread the flames.

A total of four ground firefighting teams and more than 30 vehicles with 100 firefighters were mobilized, while 17 aircrafts and helicopters operated from above. Machinery from various surrounding municipalities, volunteers and the military, as well as reinforcements from the Epirus region, Thessaly and Macedonia also joined the effort.

The rocky terrain along with the weather conditions, greatly hindered firefighters’ efforts to reach the fire, leaving much of the heavy lifting to the aircrafts.

According to reports, the fire broke out as a result of the explosion of a utility pole and was picked up by a drone belonging to the Fire Department.

An emergency 112 message was sent to the nearby residents, calling for them to remain vigilant and on standby until further instructions were announced.

The wildfire on Mt. Parnitha was just one of 54 fires around Greece in the last 24 hours .

Another notable fire broke out in the area of Lakka Katsari in Aspropyrgos, a municipality in West Attica on Saturday afternoon, while an evacuation message was sent to the nearby residents. The fire has since been put under control.

Earlier in the day another fire erupted in the East Attica town of Keratea, which has been put under control by the massive mobilization of the authorities.

Greece’s Minister for Climate Crisis and Civil Protection Vasilis Kikilias spoke with journalists on Friday on Greek tv, urging caution as half of the country will be at a high risks for fires this weekend and through to Sunday afternoon.

In a post n Greek on X, he said, “Starting late tonight and throughout Saturday and into Sunday afternoon, half of the country will be at the orange level, that is, at a very high risk of forest fires, due to gale-force winds of 7-8 and in places 9 Beaufort.