Efforts continue to control the fires in the North region

The National Water and Forests Agency (ANEF) assured on Sunday that the firefighting intervention teams in several forests in the north of the Kingdom have succeeded in definitively controlling three fires, while efforts continue. to contain the other fires in the next few hours.

In the midst of an exceptional drought and the heat wave that the Kingdom is experiencing, fires broke out in several forests in the north of the country, the Agency said in a press release, specifying that these are forests located in the provinces of Taza, Larache, Tetouan, Ouezzane and Chefchaouen.

For the fifth consecutive day, the various forest firefighting teams from the various departments and establishments continue, according to a well-developed strategy, to ensure the effectiveness of land and air interventions, despite the high temperatures, the difficulty of the terrain and the wind of Chergui, says the same source.

The damaged area reached, from Wednesday evening until Sunday July 17, 6,600 hectares, specifies the ANEF, adding that the efforts of the intervention teams focused, first, on securing the douars near the forests. burned and the preservation of their property. Thus, 20 douars were proactively evacuated.

The Agency stresses that to deal with these fires, approximately 2,000 elements of Waters and Forests, Civil Protection, Royal Armed Forces, Royal Gendarmerie, Auxiliary Forces and local authorities, equipped with tank trucks, trucks of first intervention, were mobilized. Also, five “Canadair” aircraft and eight “Turbo Trush” type aircraft of the Royal Gendarmerie were used during these operations.

And for the first time, ANEF drones were used to detect and monitor fires to determine the priorities of air and ground interventions, after studying and analyzing infrared images.

Thus, the Agency affirms that three fires have been definitively brought under control in Tahla (Taza), Sahel El Menzla (Larache) and Mokrisset (Ouezzane) and this, in parallel with the return of 95% of the inhabitants to their homes, after the complete control of these fires.

And to support that the efforts continue to contain the other fires in the next hours. The fire in the El Qola forest (Larache), which damaged around 5,300 hectares, is 70% under control, that of the Jbel Lahbib forest (Tetouan) at 80% and that of the Tassift forest (Chefchaouen) at more than 70 %.

In addition, the Ministry of Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development and Water and Forests, through the ANEF, carried out a diagnosis of the situation and statistics, as well as the identification of the effects and repercussions on the programming of integrated projects with a view to rehabilitating the affected ecosystems, using types of forests adapted to the natural specificities of each zone, starting with the next afforestation campaign.

Regarding the social aspect, and within the framework of the “Green Generation” 2020-2030 and “Forests of Morocco” 2020-2030 strategies, a unit has been set up at central and local levels, in coordination with all the actors, in order to identify the necessary and urgent measures to support the population affected by these fires and the programming of integrated development projects.

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