Fire scorches forests at base of Mount Penteli, north of capital Athens, threatening surrounding suburbs, authorities say, as winds complicate efforts to douse blazes.

Fire is seen in Athens' Stamata municipality,  on July 27, 2021.
Fire is seen in Athens' Stamata municipality, on July 27, 2021. (Twitter/@gpahas)

An out-of-control fire has scorched forests at the base of Mount Penteli north of Athens, threatening surrounding suburbs, Greek authorities said.

"The fire is out of control," Yannis Kalafatelis, the mayor of the town of Dionysos, told radio Skai on Tuesday. 

His counterpart at the town of Penteli, Dimitra Kehaya, told the radio station that the blaze had spread across "several kilometres."

Authorities have sent alerts to mobile phones of residents of the affected area, warning them to "be ready to follow instructions," but no evacuation orders had yet been issued.

READ MORE: Greek firefighters battle Attica blaze for second day

Winds complicate mission 

ERT public television interrupted its programming for live coverage of the fire.

Some 74 firefighters, backed by five helicopters and five planes equipped for dropping water were battling to contain the blaze, but their efforts were complicated by the 38 kilometre per hour winds.

Forest fires regularly erupt in Greece during the summer months, including around Mount Penteli.

In July 2018, 102 people died when a fire fed by winds off the mountain raced through the coastal town of Mati, near Athens, in the country's worst-ever toll from a forest inferno.

READ MORE: Greece wildfire sparks fears of 'huge ecological disaster'

Source: AFP