A thermal power plant on Turkey's Aegean coast was evacuated Wednesday as it was overtaken by wildfires. Workers at the site had previously emptied cooling tanks filled with hydrogen as a precaution. The AFP news agency reported firefighters, police and workers fleeing the scene as flames roared into the site. "Flames have entered the Kermekoy thermal power plant," said Mayor Muhammet Tokat of the town of Milas, in southwestern Turkey. The plant uses coal and fuel oil to produce electricity. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was in the middle of a televised interview when the evacuation began, saying, "the power plant is at risk of burning," and adding, "There has been a tremendous wind. Otherwise, it would have been easier to contain."
Fires in Turkey have been raging for more than a week, destroying large areas of forest along the country's Aegean and Mediterranean coasts, displacing thousands and killing eight. On Wednesday, Agriculture and Forestry Minister Bekir Pakdemirli said temperatures in Marmaris on the Aegean coast had shattered records, hitting 45.5 degrees Celsius (114 degrees Fahrenheit). "We are fighting a very serious war," he told reporters, "I urge everyone to be patient."
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