The National Emergency Office (ONEMI) has issued red alerts - the highest level - for the communes of Melipilla and Paine, both located in the Santiago Metropolitan Region, due to ongoing wildfires. The alerts remain in effect as of early Thursday, January 18 (local time).
As of Wednesday evening, the so-called Las Tinajas fire in Melipilla had burned 105 hectares (260 acres) of land and had damaged several homes and wineries. The Águila Sur fire in Paine had burned 50 hectares (125 acres) of land.
Forest fires are relatively common in Chile during the summer months. The country was devastated by a string of major forest fires in January 2017, which resulted in the deaths of 11 people, as well as the destruction of around 1500 houses and over 580,000 hectares (1.4 million acres).
Individuals in the area are advised to keep abreast of the situation and adhere to any instructions issued by the local authorities.