A total of 17 new fire trucks are expected to arrive in Cyprus this year in a bid to strengthen the island’s ability to fight flames, Agriculture Minister Costas Kadis said on Friday.
In a statement marking forest protection week, Kadis specified four of the new trucks would be large and 14 would be medium size while in 2019, another four large fire trucks would be arriving.
Additionally measures to combat fires by air will be taken with the support of UK airforce specialists.
“For the purposes of plane’s response time, we are planning the creation of two new landing strips for firefighting aircraft.”
Kadis said they were studying whether the aircraft would be purchased, rented or if the services would be bought.
At the moment, the forestry department has two firefighting aircraft which are ready to be put to use, he added.
“Almost every summer in our country, as in other areas of our planet, fires create huge catastrophes in forest ecosystems.”
As such, the state and its citizens must work together to try and prevent them.
“Let us not forget that as favourable as the conditions are to start a fire, a spark is needed which is usually the result of human negligence.”
Work must be exerted to put an end to this, he added.