Friday, 27 June 2008

Burn down the villas, not the trees

Yesterday between 6am and 6pm 51 fires were declared, 22 of which in Attica. Fire department acted swiftly and they were all put down. However just after 19.00, just I was getting in my car to go to my business, I saw a thick cloud of smoke and a fire helicopter flying litteraly above my head. I automatically went indoors changed to my old jeans and t-shirt and instead of driving toward the tube, I drove up toward the mountain. The fire was still alive but the helicopters were thank God on time and on target despite strong winds. There is a small spot between houses in Patima Vrilission (2klm from my house) where the municipality of Vrilissia helped by some of the citizen associations (we participate with our filozoiki organization) keep 24/7 guard against arsony. Yet, despite that, there was a fire. Because of that, it was put down soon enough. The good thing is that the trees although were licked by the fire, their core is still alive.
And my point is: even in a place like Vrilissia where the municipality, the fire department and the people living there are taking their own measures to prevent and to fight the fire, they still can not escape this danger. Some of us will cut their holidays half to make sure that there will always be someone up there at any time during the day or night to keep an eye of what's left of the forrest that used to be there.
The mayor has been asking for a few months now to declare what is the ownership status of that location as it is in the eye of many construction companies. Despite our efforts there was a fire. Our efforts will be intensified. And even if local government and civilians will be there they can not make up for the organized and coordinated efforts of central government. I keep searching every day to look for detailed measures against wood fires. None. What about having forrest rangers? Or have the soldiers take turns instead of reading porn maganizes and watching the footie? (those that actually serve)
And most importantly: I have never seen a villa being demolished if it was built in a previously burnt forrest area. Or better yet, put in jail the construction feudal lords that sold them out in the first place. That would probably be the best measure.
I am really afraid of what is coming this summer.

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