WATCH: Costa Blanca fire rages as 40 homes destroyed and 2,620 people evacuated

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Ministerio de Agricultura, Pesca y Alimentación
700 emergency personnel are tackling the relentless blaze

A FIRE devastating Llutxent has so far turned 3,000 hectares of wood and scrubland to ashes, destroyed 40 homes and led to the evacuation of 2,620 people.

Now flames are approaching the resort town of Gandia after wind fanning the flames turned north.

The fire, which started in the early hours of Monday, is being fought by 700 emergency personnel on the ground plus 27 planes and helicopters.

Firefighters from Valencia, Castellon and Alicante have been joined by forestry teams and the Military Emergency Unit (UME) in the battle to contain the blaze.

The 2,500 people evacuated from Llutxent have still not been allowed to see if they have a home to return to.

So far the municipal districts of Gandia, Llutxent, Pinet, Ador, Barx and Quatretonda have been affected, with 120 people from Pinet joining the list of evacuees.

The fire, fanned by strong gusts of wind is now threatening to devastate the Sierra de Quatretonda.

Since 7am this morning (Wednesday) when air units could operate again, firefighting efforts have been concentrated on stopping the flames reaching more populated areas, particularly the town of Barx.

Now firefighters have been placed at strategic points to protect people and property from the encroaching flames.

The fire is thought to have been started by a lightning strike.

The 2,500 people originally evacuated came from La Drova and the Montesol and Montepino urbanisations.

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The wildfire has so far turned 3,000 hectares of wood and scrubland to ashes

Photo Credit: Ministerio de Agricultura, Pesca y Alimentación

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Helicopters battle to contain the blaze

Credit Ministerio de Agricultura, Pesca y Alimentación

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