Portugal on red alert for fires

in News · 17-07-2020 17:44:00 · 0 Comments

In view of the weather forecasts for the coming days, which point to a significant increase in the risk of rural fire, the Ministers of Internal Affairs and the Environment and Climate Action has signed the Order that determines the Declaration of the Situation of Alert throughout the Mainland territory.

The Alert Situation covers the period from now until 11:59pm on 19 July.

The declaration follows the activation of the special red alert state - from the Integrated System of Protection and Relief Operations - for the Special Device to Fight Rural Fires in 10 districts: Viana do Castelo, Braga, Vila Real, Bragança, Viseu, Guarda, Castelo Branco, Santarém, Porto and Aveiro.

In the remaining eight districts - Beja, Évora, Coimbra, Faro, Leiria, Lisbon, Portalegre and Setúbal - the orange alert state was activated.

This statement also stems from the need to adopt preventive and special reaction measures in view of the maximum and very high fire risk predicted by the IPMA, at least until Monday, in more than half of the continent's counties due to the hot weather.

Within the scope of the Alert Situation Declaration, foreseen in the Civil Protection Bases Law, the following exceptional measures will be implemented:

1) Prohibition of access, circulation and permanence inside the forest spaces previously defined in the Municipal Plans for the Defence of the Forest Against Fires, as well as in the forest paths, rural paths and other paths that cross them;

2) Prohibition of fires and burning of exploration leftovers;

3) Total prohibition on the use of fireworks or other pyrotechnic devices, regardless of the form of combustion, as well as the suspension of authorisations that have been issued in the districts where the Special Red Level Alert State has been declared by the Authority National Emergency and Civil Protection;

4) Prohibition of carrying out work in forest areas and other rural areas using any type of machinery.

The declaration of the alert situation implies, among other aspects:

A) The increase in the degree of readiness and operational response by the GNR and the PSP, with reinforcement of means for surveillance, inspection operations, patrolling behaviours and general support for the protection and rescue operations that may be triggered , considering for that purpose the interruption of vacation leave and suspension of breaks and rest periods authorized;

B) The increase in the degree of readiness and mobilization of medical emergency, public health and psychosocial support teams, by the competent entities in the areas of health and social security, through the respective tutelage;

C) The permanent mobilization of the Forest Sapper teams;

D) The permanent mobilization of the National Corps of Forest Agents and Nature Watchers that integrate the fire prevention and fighting device, by the Institute for the Conservation of Nature and Forests, I. P., through the respective tutelage;

E) The conduct by the GNR of patrolling (surveillance) and aerial inspection actions by means of the Air Force, in the districts in a special alert state of the SIOPS, for the DECIR, focusing on the places with a very high and maximum fire risk.

In addition to the issuance of notices to the population by the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority on the danger of rural fire, the Air Force - through the Ministry of National Defence - must make available the aerial means to, if necessary, be operational at the locations to be determined by ANEPC.


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