Fires Rage Through Mexico's La Primavera Forest Despite Efforts by Authorities

Category: World / Apr 24, 2012 3:33PM EDT

Firefighters struggled to contain a massive forest fire on the southern outskirts of Guadalajara on Monday (April 23).

The blaze in the La Primavera forest has already ravaged nearly 10,000 acres of the protected reserve since Saturday (April 21), officials at the federal environmental ministry reported.

Over 450 firefighters, soldiers and six specialist air force helicopters have been called in to help authorities bring the stubborn flames under control.

Alan Garcia, the Minister for Rural Development for the drug-ravaged Jalisco state, told reporters that preliminary investigations led authorities to suspect the blaze could have been caused by burning at an illegal garbage dump.

However, he said he wasn't convinced by that theory and the investigation must continue. 

In recent years, authorities have uncovered outdoor drug labs in Jalisco's forests.

Soldiers and firefighters are sweeping through the large forest to isolate small fires whilst helicopters above douse large flames.

Keen to stop the blaze from spreading to different zones of the protected reserve, soldiers and firefighters are looking to put out existing fires and stop embers from catching alight again.

Mexican President Felipe Calderon wrote on his Twitter on Tuesday (April 24) that 65 percent of the forest fires are under control but winds have complicated the work of authorities.