By Mohsin Abbas / Santiago Times Staff
Vichuquén, Chile – Thousands of people have joined the country’s forces to combat the flames of the worst fires in Chile’s history.
As wildfires have been raging in central and southern Chile, fanned by strong winds, hot temperatures and a prolonged drought, firefighters, volunteers and neighbours have risked everything with the sole objective of saving fields, houses and especially lives.
Surprisingly, they also include Francisco López, the national motocross champion, who surprised everyone when he joined fire fighting in the town of Llico in the commune of Vichuquén, where he has a house.
Nicknamed as “Chaleco”, Lopez also joined the residents of the Camino Real sector and throughout the day, they worked to prevent the flames from approaching the houses.
“It has been difficult to turn off the lights. We call people because we are helping,” López, the current competitor of Rally Mobil, told La Radio.
The athlete not only explained the situation but also pointed out that he believes that there is intentionality in the catastrophe. “Here we are with friends from Iloca, Llico, we are all Chileans and we are helping. I have the house down but we are helping with the neighbors. The pity is that it is burning everything. It is more than clear that they (fires) are intentional,” Lopez added.
Lopez’s claim has been reaffirmed on several social networks.