More than 3,000 people evacuated in southern France due to fire

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More than 3,000 people have been evacuated in southern France after a wildfire was accidentally started by a tractor.

The blaze has ravaged at least 700 hectares of land in the region of Aveyron since it erupted on Monday, fanned by strong winds.

Thousands of residents and holidaymakers have been forced to flee homes and campsites, but no injuries have so far been reported.

The fire is believed to have started in the neighbouring region of Lozere before spreading westwards. 

Firefighters say they have lit “tactical fires” to burn vegetation and prevent the flames from advancing further.

Investigators believe that a metal piece of tractor machinery set fire to nearby land when it scraped against a hot road, creating sparks.

The farmer who was driving the tractor called the emergency services himself after trying to fight the flames with his own water tank.

More than 47,000 hectares of French land have already been burned by wildfires this year, while many parts of the country are enduring a historic drought.