People Forced Into Sea To Escape Greek Wildfires In Terrifying Footage
The true horror of the Greek wildfires that are devastating the country at the minute has been revealed in videos that show people taking to the sea as their last hope of avoiding being burned alive by the flames.
Survivors huddled together in the seas around Mati, east of the country's capital Athens, as the land around them smouldered and burned.
The footage was captured by one of the survivors last Monday and was posted on Facebook with the caption: "We lived through hell and death."
It was accompanied by a request for viewers to 'republish the photos to help people find their own'.
The fire has caused people to become trapped on cliffs, with some forced to jump for their lives into the sea below as a last resort. Others made their way to the sea to escape as the air around them filled with thick, dangerous smoke.
So far, the fires have claimed the lives of 83 people according to fire services, although that figure is expected to rise. More than 1,000 homes have been destroyed and at least 300 vehicles have been consumed by the fires.
However, some reports are already putting the death toll at as high as 91.
Only 30 of the 83 bodies discovered so far have been identified.
To help with this process, a specialist team has been brought in from Germany's Federal Police. They have been present at many huge disasters, including the Boxing Day Tsunami that struck the Indian Ocean back in 2004.
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They are assisting the Greek authorities in Athens to identify more of the dead.
Such is the severity of the situation that relatives of those killed have been asked to bring DNA samples of their loved ones to a mortuary in Athens so that the identification process can be made easier.
This is because some of the remains are so badly burned that they are beyond recognition.
Meanwhile, there is currently an investigation underway into the cause of the blaze. Drones and USA Naval planes are being used to ascertain whether the blazes were started on purpose.
The planes and aircraft are taking aerial photos, which are then being examined for any trace of human involvement in the starting of the fires.
Mati has been the part of the country worst affected by the tragedy.
The Greek government has been criticised for failing to properly prepare for, or deal with the fires.
Yesterday, a spokesperson from the Greek Federation of Firefighters said: "The government might be saying there were no grave operational mistakes, but what it isn't saying is that there were thousands of small mistakes.
"All those mistakes make the big mistake and that is why we had such an unprecedented number of deaths."
Featured Image Credit: PA
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