This year is going to be fierce for forest fires, as the drought over the winter means the hills are covered in dry and dead vegetation, and a very hot summer is expected.
We’ve already lost more land to fire this year than during all of 2013, and the Junta de Andalucia is expecting that this year could be the worst for a decade for fire.
So they’ve leased two new aerial units: a Bell 412 helicopter, capable of carrying 1,000 litres of water per trip, which will be based in Alhama de Almería, and an Airtractor AT802 plane, capable of carrying 3,200 litres of water or fire retardant per trip, based in Gérgal. Both of these planes will have a full team of specialists associated with them, and will be in operation by the 1st of May.
Another fire brigade is also being constituted, which will be shared with Jaen and Granada.
A special information campaign on the dangers of fire will be launched shortly, directed at people living in rural areas, and those entering natural parks for holidays.
Meanwhile, we discover today that some scumbag broke into the regional fire HQ in Almería and stole all the equipment.