Just one among numerous harrowing stories.
Although the worst of the fires around Split seems to be behind us, the local population continues to live in fear and uncertainty. One of them is former Miss Dalmatia Dina Jelaska, who posted her account of yesterday’s inferno, which was among the worst ever to hit the Split area, reports Jutarnji List on 18 July 2017.
“On Monday evening at 7.00 pm, I had to leave my home with three children for safety reasons. Many mothers stood on the road until 5 am with small children in their hands. They packed their most valuable belongings in just one suitcase. We did not sleep all night – we were worried about our homes and mostly about people who defended them. I do not know your names, how young or old you are, how much smoke you inhaled and how long you did not sleep… I do not know how to thank you. My heart is full,” wrote Jelaska, who was Miss Dalmatia in 2000, and who now lives with her husband in the United Arab Emirates.
“I was born in Split, but this is something I have never seen before, except in movies. The panic spread in just 15 minutes. People were cutting branches of trees, watering their gardens… Sparks were flying around us; we heard mines exploding in the distance… The firefighters were simply helpless because of the high winds,” said Jelaska, who went to Duilovo in Split.
“Even here, we had to close the windows because of the smoke and the wind which was blowing. It was hard to breathe… People are constantly out there. This morning, fortunately, firefighters from Zagreb arrived, so their colleagues from Dubrovnik were able to rest for a short while,” she added.
Jelaska and her family live in Dubai, but she comes to Dalmatia whenever she can.