Learn from mistakes to try does not happen again. This could be the objective of the news that we tell you today in El Eco of LOS40 within the framework of the new territory that, from last week and during the next month and a half, will occupy us particularly: the prevention of fires.

The data speaks for itself: 63% of the fires that took place in the last year 2022 were the result of human neglect. This is confirmed by the report of the Parquet de l’Environnement which also indicates that 25.5% of the fires investigated are intentional. That is to say: in total, the hand of man is the cause of nearly nine out of ten forest fires.

For this reason, many fires result in police investigations once they are extinguished. In 2022, they were arrested or investigated for this reason 482 people, 7% more than the previous year, when authorities arrested 450 people. However, it is also common for many forest fires to go unpunished, as those responsible are not always found. It is not easy to determine the paternity of a fire.

Beyond the human hand, natural causes are also the cause of fire. The lightning was responsible for some of the most virulent of the last year, such as that of the Sierra de la Culebra and the Riofrío de Aliste, which devastated 24,073.86 ha, and that of Losacio, both in Zamora, with 26,181.96 hectares. Also from Las Hurdes (Cáceres), with 10,438.58 hectares. In all these cases, early detection of the fire would have been essential to stop it more quickly and avoid damage as massive as the one that occurred.

Fewer, more violent fires

In all, last year they burned 267,939.64 hectares, a figure that almost triples the average (94,249). Despite this, the total number of fires is not higher, but slightly lower. How is this disparity explained? Due to the fact that the fires are more and more aggressive. Large fires such as those mentioned in the Sierra de la Culebra or Las Hurdes burned 113,623.53 hectares, which represents 42.5% of the forest area burned.

This year, several fires have already burned some 32,000 hectares in Asturias. The recent fire in Castellón devastated 4,700 hectares. The authorities warn: the situation is extremely worrying. This very week, much of the country will experience a significant rise in temperature. Thermometers should be between 5º and 10º above the average, which will trigger a fire hazard. For this reason, the Ministry of the Interior has decided to bring forward the prevention campaign by a month and a half. The troops are ready to fight the flames.

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