Major airlines Jet2 and TUI cancel all flights to Rhodes as wildfires rage on Greek island
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Holiday firms Jet2 and TUI have announced their decision to cancel all flights and holidays which were due to depart to Rhodes today because of the wildfires on the Greek island.
In a statement, Jet2 said: "We have cancelled all flights and holidays that are due to depart to Rhodes today.
"We will be contacting affected customers to update them, and to let them know that they will be provided with a full refund and the opportunity to rebook."
“We will fly those five aircraft to Rhodes with no customers onboard, so that we can bring customers back to the UK on their scheduled flight."
“We are keeping the situation under constant review, and we will continue to make decisions in the best interests of our customers.”
While TUI wrote on their website: "We have cancelled all outbound flights to Rhodes up to and including Tuesday 25th of July 2023. Customers currently in Rhodes will return on their intended flight home."
That's five flights in total which have been cancelled from Jet2, while TUI have cancelled all flights to the island until Wednesday (26 July).
Matthew Lodge, the UK’s ambassador to Greece, said: “Since the #wildfires situation deteriorated yesterday @ukingreece has been working with the Greek authorities, airlines and tour operators to support UK nationals on #Rhodes.
“A rapid deployment team from @FCDOGovUK is on its way.”
Thousands of tourists on the island have been forced to flee from the fire and smoke while people are being evacuated from Rhodes to get them out of the way of the destruction.
A spokesperson for the Hellenic Fire Corps said these wildfires were the worst that Rhodes has ever had to deal with, with punishingly high temperatures identified as one of the major causes behind the devastating blazes.
Extreme heatwaves are sweeping across much of Europe and the US, posing a serious risk to life and health with the effects they've inflicted upon the areas affected.
Planet Earth recently had the hottest week ever recorded, with several of the top spots for hottest ever days notched in succession.
Scientists have said we're in 'uncharted territory' after the record breaking temperatures as humanity begins to reap the figurative whirlwind of climate change.
While the airlines have been using their planes to evacuate people off the burning island, the deputy mayor of Rhodes has said they don't have enough essential supplies.
While there is water and food for the people displaced by the wildfires, the number of available mattresses and bedding for those who have nowhere to stay is not enough.
Greece's Ministry of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection says that to date no injuries have been reported due to the fires, and areas affected by the fires are without power.