Eight forest fires at 106 ha burning in Russia Far East

KHABAROVSK, August 25 (Itar-Tass) — There are eight forest fires at an area of 106 hectares in the Russian Far East on Thursday.

The Forestry Department of the Far Eastern Federal District told Itar-Tass that “five fires are in the territory of Yakutia, two – in the Amur region and one – in the Kamchatka Territory,” a department official said.

Forest protection units on Wednesday extinguished five fires in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) at an area of 4,948 hectares.

According to the Far East regional emergencies centre, 154 people and 21 pieces of equipment, including six aircraft are involved in the efforts to put out wildfires.

According to earlier reports, in connection with the start of the hunting and berry season, as well as continuing haymaking season in the territory of Yakutia, the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry’s (EMERCOM) main department for the republic has requested hunters and residents of rural areas to protect forests from fires and observe the basic fire safety rules in forestlands and reminded them that the emergency situation regime in forests is still in effect. Yakutia’s head Yegor Borisov said earlier that “only regular monitoring from the air may help prevent wildfires in the republic, with a territory of more than three million square metres.” A total of 60 million roubles have been allocated from the federal budget in 2011 to sponsor air survey in Yakutia, although the republic needs 350 million roubles for these purposes.

Since the beginning of the season the Far East has been affected by 1,718 fires, the fire swept over 900,000 hectares of land, including more than 718,000 hectares of forestland.

The region’s forest protection services are currently receiving new equipment. “More than 700 million roubles have been allocated for these purposes from the federal budget to the Far East Federal District, and an additional 50 million roubles have been provided from regional budgets. A total of 28 state contracts on the supply of 253 units of forest fire-fighting equipment have been concluded,” the Forestry Department said. Yakutia has already received 38 units of equipment, and the Khabarovsk Territory – 16 units.


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