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Wildfires cost dear to Azerbaijan

16 August 2014 [09:15] - TODAY.AZ
By AzerNews

Seven wildfires burned through Azerbaijani forests this summer.

Sector head of the Forest Development Department of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources Sadiq Salmanov said that the damage may amount to about 5,000 manats.

"Investigation is underway to determine the exact amount of damage," he noted.

Different causes including lightning and volcanic eruptions and unattended campfires may result in forest fires. Sometimes, even a lighted cigarette left in the forest can also ignite a wildfire. The following are some of the most important factors that can cause forest fires, or increase their intensity to the extent that they can wreak havoc on the flora and fauna of the affected area.

At times, wildfires can be spontaneous, especially when the weather is extremely hot and dry to create enough heat that can induce spontaneous combustion.

However, human activities, or to be more specific, human carelessness is responsible for causing more than 80 percent of all wildfires.

Salmanov noted that effective proactive measures were taken last year to prevent forest fires with satisfactory results.

However, the similar measures turned out ineffective this year as fire occurred in a total area of ??45 hectares in different regions of the country, including Oguz, Lerik, Masalli, Siyazan and Gabala.

The most damage to property was fixed in Lerik and Siyazan.

"The cause of current fires is anthropogenic impact," he explained. "There are two anthropogenic factors causing fires - careless handling of fire and burning the grass after the grain harvest. In our case fire easily spreads to forest areas from the bordering lands owned by municipalities and private lands while grass burning after the grain harvesting."

Salmanov noted that dry weather has preserved the risk of forest fires until the end of October. So, the Forest Development Department will work in emergency mode till the end of October.

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