Lisbon: The charred bodies of an elderly couple were found inside a burnt-out car after they tried to flee a wildfire ravaging the municipality of Murca in northern Portugal, authorities said.
The bodies of the deceased couple were recovered on Monday, Xinhua news agency reported.
Mayor of Murca, Mario Artur Lopes said the couple was aged above 80 years and their car fell down a canyon while they were trying to escape from the flames that engulfed half of Murca’s territory.
The Republican National Guard, a Portuguese security force of military nature, is investigating the accident.
Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa deeply regretted the accident and expressed his condolences to the victims’ family.
More than 80 municipalities in 10 districts in Portugal are in danger of rural fire, according to the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and Atmosphere.
However, as of Monday, Portugal has lowered the fire danger rating from “contingency situation” back to “alert situation”, the lowest level. The situation will be reassessed on Tuesday based on weather conditions.