Spain’s forest firefighters went on strike Monday as wildfires swept the countryside in Catalonia.
As hundreds of people were forced to flee their homes, firefighters refused to battle the blaze in protest of poor working conditions.
The association of forest firefighters, Atbrif, said in a statement that the firefighters are protesting “terrible” working conditions, a lack of concern by authorities and poor wages
The locale.es reports that more 800 people were evacuated from the villages of Ca l’Esteve, El Bosc Gran and Monserrat Parc in Ódena near Barcelona, after wildfires broke out over the weekend.
At least 1,000 hectares of vegetation have been destroyed by the fire, which broke out on Sunday afternoon. While the fire continues to rage, firefighters have stabilized the perimeter ensuring the flames did not expand further overnight, according to the Spanish Huffington Post.