Rome: Rome's Fiumino airport suspended all departing flights on Wednesday after a fire broke out in a nearby pine grove, Italian airline Alitalia said on Twitter. "Due to a fire outside Rome Fiumicino airport all departures are suspended," Alitalia said, while airport authorities added that arrivals were also being affected. The fire started in a vast area of scrubland in the Pesce Luna area, before spreading to Focene pine forest, close to via Coccia di Morto, which runs around the perimeter of the airport, Il Messaggero reported.
Strong winds caused the flames, said to be a few hundred meters high, to spread. "The situation is very serious and worrying," Fiumicino Mayor Esterino Montino said. "The flames seem to be spreading from two to three different points, with some distance between each one. Focene pine forest is at risk. It's already been attacked, the flames are very high, making it difficult to intervene, and because the wind is pushing against the pines."