My family and I were last week among the hundreds evacuated as wildfires tore through the beautiful Portuguese island of Madeira, leaving three people dead and many more injured and/or homeless.
I have been at the scene of too many domestic fires in my role as a journalist – often at very close quarters (with permission of firefighters).
But wildfires are different – you can feel the intense heat from many meters away, they spread faster as a result of the enormous swarms of burning embers they spew out and can charge in different directions at once. And then change direction, seemingly on a pin head.
They are terrifying.
These are my before and after photographs of last week’s fires.