ATHENS, Aug. 6 (Xinhua) -- In the aftermath of the deadliest tragedy in over a decade in Greece, Civil protection officials who were involved in the management of the crisis of the July 23 wildfire near Athens, were replaced.
On Monday the General Secretary of Civil Protection Yannis Kapakis stepped down and was replaced by Yannis Tafillis, former director of the Center for Security Studies, Greek national news agency AMNA reported.
Earlier the Police and Fire Brigade chiefs were replaced, while on Friday Civil Protection Minister Nikos Toskas also resigned and his duties passed on to Interior Minister Panos Skourletis.
With over 90 casualties in the wildfire which swept through coastal settlements 1000 kilometers east of the Greek capital, the government has pledged to overhaul the civil protection mechanism and take drastic measures to ensure that Greece will not mourn for such a tragedy again in the future.
The resignations and firings came as many local administration officials and survivors have publicly said that no evacuation order was issued as the flames were closing on Neos Voutzas, Kokkino Limanaki or Mati, where most victims lost their lives.
In addition, eye witnesses have testified to the ongoing judicial investigation that traffic was mistakenly diverted into the narrow streets of Mati during the fire and motorists were trapped in the blaze.
As the search for the causes of the tragedy continued, government officials, citing experts, have noted that at the time of the wildfire extreme weather phenomena with winds blowing at speeds of more than 1000 kilometers per hour spread the flames rapidly, allowing a small window for reaction.
Furthermore, they argued that illegal constructions had obstructed the quick access of people to the sea.
As of this week the Environment and Energy Ministry has announced that the first 61 illegal constructions erected across Attica prefecture, will be demolished.