Brits forced to march 12 hours to flee Greek inferno in Dunkirk-like scene

Resorts evacuated as blaze rages out of control on Greek island of Rhodes

Petrified British tourists were left with no choice but to scramble away from wildfires for eight miles carrying their luggage and children in inferno-like temperatures on the Greek island of Rhodes.

The “Dunkirk-style” operation saw desperate Brits fleeing the flames as the holiday spot became “hell on earth”.

The blaze made light work of the island’s defences and as a result 30,000 people were forced to evacuate as the popular tourist resorts fell into the fire’s range.

Evacuees marched for hours in the sweltering Greek July heat, as temperatures soared to 38C as smoke billowed down the mountains in what looked like a scene from a dystopian movie.

People found themselves wading into the Mediterranean Sea in order to be picked up by rescue dinghies in scenes reminiscent of the British army evacuation of Dunkirk during World War Two.

READ MORE Family slam TUI after being flown out to Rhodes despite wildfire evacuations[LATEST]

People have spent multiple nights on the rock-hard airport floor, longing for their turn to get on a flight home, as more evacuation orders were made for Monday (July 24).

Greek firefighters continue to battle more than 80 wildfires across the country, 64 of which ignited on Sunday which was the hottest day of the year.

It’s estimated a third of all the evacuees are British and some have spoken out about the terror of the ordeal.

Joanna Harber from Birmingham told The Times: “We feared for our lives. We walked from then until after it was dark and only made it to the airport at 4am”.

A friend of Joanna’s, Katie Fogg, described the searing heat of the flames and the grim reality of trying to escape them.

She told the same publication: “Every time you turned around you could see the flames coming. You felt like you were just going to collapse.”

The 28-year-old added that the heat and smoke from the fire as well as the scorching weather made breathing incredibly difficult.

South Londoner Malcolm McCarthy, 65, made a chilling comparison, he said simply: “It was like Dunkirk.”

Jodie, a mum-of-two, lauded the people of Rhodes as “heroes”.

She said: “The people of Rhodes are the heroes here. The boat guys, the guy handing out towels on the beach to protect my babies from the smoke, the free cold drinks when we got off the boat, the bus that stopped in Lardos, the taxi driver in Rhodos, Chris – our amazing taxi driver from the previous night, his local knowledge and reassuring voice notes were a game changer”.

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Meanwhile, tourists continue to wait to fly back home from Rhodes International Airport, while the discontent at airlines continues.

Jet2, TUI and Corendon have all cancelled flights leaving for the Greek island.

UK airline easyJet said on Sunday that it was operating two repatriation flights on Monday from the devastated island to London Gatwick, on top of the nine flights already operating between the island and UK airport.

The airline added that another repatriation flight would leave on Tuesday.

Irish airline Ryanair said on Sunday its flights to and from the island were operating as normal.

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