Ethiopia Forest Fire Emergency Update: 14 March 2000, 08:45 GMT

Ethiopia Forest Fire Emergency Update

14 March 2000, 08:45 GMT


The update information by satellite sensors is provided by imageries by NOAA / OSEI. and the U.S. Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP).

et_03142000_12a.jpg (12632 Byte) et_03142000_12a.jpg (12632 Byte)

Fig.1 & 2. The area of reported fires has been highlighted by a green outline on this images from 12 March. Heat signatures are difficult to identify because of solar contamination and lack of visible smoke. The right image is a closeup view.  The green frame in the center of the image corresponds to the geographic coordinates of the DMSP imageries which are displayed below. Within the framed box the problem fires oft he mountain forests are located.
(Source: NOAA/OSEI)

The DMSP images below show the development of the fires for the period 10 – 12 March. The red dots represent active fires. Land signature: brown; water: blue; clouds: grey; stable lights (cities): cyan.

10 March 2000, click to enlarge (241 KB) 11 March 2000, click to enlarge (219 KB) 12 March 2000, click to enlarge (211 KB)

Fig.3-5 DMSP scenes of East Africa, 10 – 12 March 2000.
(upper left corner 20°N, 22°E lower right corner 0°N, 50°E
(source: DMSP)

10 March 2000, click to enlarge (19 KB) 11 March 2000, click to enlarge (20 KB) 12 March 2000, click to enlarge (17 KB)

Fig.6-8 DMSP closeup scenes of the Bale region and Borana , 10 – 12 March 2000.
(upper left corner 9°N, 38°E lower right corner 5°N, 42°E)
(source: DMSP)

10 March 2000, click to enlarge (78 KB) 11 March 2000, cklick to enlarge (77 KB) 12 March 2000, click to enlarge (65 KB)

Fig.9-11 DMSP closeup scenes of the Bale region and Borana , 10 – 12 March 2000.
(upper left corner 9°N, 38°E lower right corner 5°N, 42°E)
(source: DMSP)

 

Ethiopia Current Fire Weather Situation and Forecast

Fire Weather Forecast for the Southern Region:
Tropical movement remain off the Mozambique coast thus moisture is contained in the southern hemisphere. Tropical movement much later than normal is still occuring off the eastern coastal areas of the southern hemisphere.

Tab.1. Addis Abba AREA FORECAST FOR 14H00 Tuesday 14 March 2000

6 Day 14h00 Forecast Ethiopia Region Addis Abba Area Day Temp (C) Hum (%) W Dir WSpd (km/h) Bar (Hpa) FDI Tendency Tue 14 33 42 NNW 11 1007 61 Orange Wed 15 31 33 NW 10 1005 61 Orange Thu 16 30 43 SE 12 1006 57 Yellow Fri 17 30 41 SE 11 1007 57 Yellow Sat 18 31 39 NE 18 1010 65 Orange Sun 19 33 37 NE 16 1009 67 Orange

Tab.2. Goba AREA FORECAST FOR 14H00 Tuesday 14 March 2000

6 Day 14h00 Forecast Ethiopia Region Goba Area Day Temp (C) Hum (%) W Dir WSpd (km/h) Bar (Hpa) FDI Tendency Tue 14 29 43 SSE 12 1009 56 Yellow Wed 15 27 45 SSE 9 1009 51 Yellow Thu 16 28 41 S 14 1007 58 Yellow Fri 17 27 43 SE 13 1008 55 Yellow Sat 18 28 41 SE 14 1009 58 Yellow Sun 19 26 48 SE 16 1010 54 Yellow

Source of forecast tables: Net Forecasting (South Africa) on the base of data from the ECMWF (European Center For Medium Range Weather Forecasts) and the U.K.M.O. (United Kingdom Meteorological Office).

 

14 March 2000, click to enlarge (90 KB) 15 March 2000, click to enlarge (100 KB)

Fig.12.and 13. Fire weather forecast maps for Ethiopia, 14 and 15 March 2000
(Source: Net Forecasting)

 

Also available is a three-month rain forecast (starting 26 February 2000). The implications of this forecast are discussed by Net Forecasting.

An Eastern Africa and the Horn Satellite Imagery (NDVI) and rainfall analysis is provided by the USAID Famine Early Warning System.

 

Last report received from Bale and Borana Zones (13 March 2000, 15:00 GMT)

Around Angetu (Bale Zone, south of the National Park), where fires were reported to be contained just two days again, new fires have started again. Most likely, these fires were purposely started by farmers who want to clear land. However, this needs confirmation.

In Sewana Forest around Jigessa (Borana Zone) a very vicious fire is raging the forests. The expert of the Ministry of Agriculture who is monitoring the situation in that area describes it as the “most enourmous” fire he has encountered since he was deployed to the area (three weeks). Judging from his description, we assume that a fully-fledged crown fire has developed.

Concerning the weather forecasts: Please visit the fire weather tables and synoptic maps of today’s morning update. There is no rainfall expected within the next days.

 

PlanetArk posted the following article today:

New fire erupts in Ethiopia’s Nechsar game park (March 14, 2000)
ADDIS ABABA – A forest fire has erupted inside Ethiopia’s Nechsar Game Park, home to the rare Swayne’s hartebeest, state radio reported yesterday. According to the report, the fire broke out on Sunday afternoon and is still raging, threatening wild animals including the Swayne’s hartebeest, a horse-like antelope with short, curved horns which is found only in Ethiopia. Other wild animals in the park include Burchell’s zebra, Grant’s gazelle and the greater kudu. Nechsar, a 514 sq kms (320 sq miles) game park, is located near the town of Arba Minch some 500 kms (310 miles) south of Addis Ababa. The report said the fire was thought to have been started by Guji and Koira tribes who inhabit the region while clearing bushland for cultivation. Tesfaye Hundesa, manager of the Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Department, told Reuters that unless the fire was brought under control soon, a significant number of wildlife in the park was threatened. Meanwhile the state-run Ethiopian News Agency (ENA) reported that another blaze that threatened to engulf the 1,500 square kms (932 sq miles) Bale Mountain Park, also in the south of the country, had almost been brought under control. South African and Ethiopian firefighters using two helicopters and a spotter plane are tackling the blaze from the air while some 70,000 soldiers, farmers and students are tackling the fire from the ground, according to officials. Dagnachew Shiferaw, a regional official in Bale, told ENA that fires in the districts of Berbere, Delo-Mena, Goba and Goro in the southern region of Bale have been extinguished. The blazes have already destroyed some 70,000 hectares (175,000 acres) of natural forest.
REUTERS NEWS SERVICE

 

The Ethiopian National Fire Fighting Committee, supported by the International Fire Emergency Advisory Group, has set up an Incident Command System. The structure of the system is given in the chart (Fig.14).

click to enlarge (10 KB)

Fig.14. Structure of the Incident Command System (State: 11 March 2000)

 

For further information (history of the current fire situation, etc.) please refer also to the earlier reports this and last week at the “Current Significant Fire Events” page. Some visual impressions from the currently ongoing fires in Ethiopia are also available.


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