Spain braces for more forest fires

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FIRE FEARS: Experts warn of more fires to come if new measures aren’t implemented. CREDIT: Facebook (Bomberos municipales)


THE volume of forest fires recently has fuelled concern about the risk in the coming summer months.

2019 is already the fourth worst year in a decade and as a dry and hot summer is again forecast, the number of forest fires is expected to increase.

As of May 31, a total of 35,000 hectares had been torched, 5,800 of which are wooded areas.

The areas said to be most at risk are the regions of Jaén, Huelva, Malaga, Extremadura, Murcia, southern León and Almeria.

Experts from the Association of Fire Protection Societies, Tecnifuego, claim the worse-than-normal risk of fires is due to the unusually warm weather, changes in forest management and an increasing amount of uninhabited rural areas.

They also point out that climate change has an impact, with a rise of “sixth generation” fires. These happen due to changes in the tropospheric layer caused by past fires that propagate new fires that are ignited.

Authorities are calling for more preventative measures to be taken in high risk areas such as forest floor clearing and better rural land management, as well as extinguishing points and fire breaks.

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