Fires: GNR attentive to almost 14.000 locations at risk of non-compliance with land clearance

Deadline for mandatory land clearing is April 30

The GNR identified 13.949 locations where the mandatory cleaning work to prevent fires will possibly not be completed by April 30, a higher number than last year.

In response to the Lusa agency, Guarda stressed that, within the scope of the “Floresta Segura 2023” campaign, it had identified, by April 9, 13.949 places at risk of non-compliance with the mandatory cleaning of land with the aim of minimizing the risk of fire in priority areas, which, according to the law, must be done by April 30th.

This year's number is higher than that of 2022, the year in which 10.989 risk sites were identified.

In the same period this year, the Guard recorded 16 administrative offense notices for burning and 58 for unauthorized burning of remnants, when last year there were a total of 362 and 123, respectively.

This year, 34 people have been arrested for forest fires, compared to 72 arrested in all of last year.

As of May 1, the GNR will begin an inspection phase and impose fines on owners who do not comply, which can reach the value of five thousand euros for natural persons or 25 thousand euros for legal persons.

In 2022, there were 4.359 fines for non-compliance with the cleaning of land passed by the GNR.

In terms of prevention, the Guard carried out, from the beginning of the year until April 9, 3.523 actions to raise awareness of self-protection measures and the correct use of fire by communities, which reached 64.972 people, compared to 6.161 in all of last year. awareness actions aimed at 79.963 people.

According to the exceptional regime for networks of fuel management lanes, work on the implementation of fuel management lanes against fires must take place by April 30 in a 50-meter strip around houses and other buildings and in a 100-meter strip around settlements, campsites and industrial zones, for example.

In March a list of 998 priority parishes was published, which shall take precedence in the inspection and compliance with the law in force.

If the owners do not comply with the cleaning of the land within the deadline, the municipal councils will ensure, from the 1st of May, that all fuel management work is carried out, but the owners will have to allow access to their land and pay the expenses to municipalities.

The GNR highlighted that the protection of people and goods, in the context of rural fires, is one of its strategic priorities, based on prevention and reinforcement of patrols in forest areas.

“Considering that the majority of fire occurrences are due to the negligent use of fire, the GNR recommends that in agroforestry activities alternative methods be used to the burning of exploitation leftovers (for example, shattering and incorporation into the soil) to reduce the risk of fire” , he underlined.

The SOS Environment and Territory Line (808 200 520), of the Nature and Environment Protection Service (SEPNA) of the GNR, is permanently open to report infractions or clarify doubts.