World

Fires force evacuation of 10,000 in 3 French Riviera towns

The top official of France's Var region on the Mediterranean coast says that 10,000 people were evacuated as blazes hopscotching around the Riviera tore through the town of La Londe-les-Maures.

The prefecture said in a statement on Wednesday that a violent fire took off just before 11 p.m. the night before, and 540 firefighters were sent in to the region.

The statement said that some 10,000 people — about 3,000 of them campers — were evacuated from La Londe and nearby Bormes and La Lavandou.

Four tracker planes and a fire-fighting aircraft were sent in. About 800 hectares of back-country forest had burned by morning.

Fires began raging along the coast on Monday, forcing smaller, scattered evacuations with flames reaching a corner of Saint-Tropez.