BEIRUT: Fire fighters sought to contain a huge fire for hours amidst high winds just outside of the Mount Lebanon town of Jeita on Sunday.
The blaze burnt through a dense forest area near the famous Jeitta Grotto, a security source told The Daily Star, which lies between the Kesrouan and Metn districts.
Visitors to the tourist attraction were advised by police not to leave the premises as the thick black smoke covered the area.
Eight civil defense trucks, two military helicopter buckets as well as security forces arrived to the scene to help put out the blaze, however despite this continued to face much difficulties due to the area's rough terrain.
Although it wasn't the first fire in the area, the source said Sunday’s blaze was unprecedented.
The fire is expected to burn through tens of thousands of square meters in the green area, known as one of the most unique ecosystems in Lebanon.
The source added that high speed winds were helping the fire spread both uphill and downhill, further complicating efforts to extinguish it.
No casualties were reported.