Fires in Spain and Portugal

Fires in Spain and Portugal

11August 2006

In northwestern Spain and Portugal dozens of fires were still racing through dryforests on 10 August 2006. This image of the area was captured by theModerate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS)on NASA’s Terra satellite on 10 August 2006. Places where MODIS detected actively burning firesare marked in red. Thick smoke spreads out in a gray-brown plume to the west. 

10 August 2006

The high-resolution images provided above have a spatial resolution of 250 meters perpixel.

Nearly 4,700 people are currently employed in the extinction of fires in the Galicia area alone. The President of the Xunta de Galicia, Emilio Pérez Touriño, has called on local residents to help where they can, describing the situation as a fight for the country.Earlier over the weekend, a fire broke out on Saturday evening close to the city of Santiago de Compostela. Declared a level one risk, the fire near the Sarela river was brought quickly undercontrol. There was also a level one fire in Cerdero in Galicia which affected the towns of Vilaboa and Moaña. That fire caused two deaths when two women were burnt to death trapped in their car in Cerdedo on Fridayafternoon. Pontevedra is the area most affected by the fires. There, more than 4,000 hectares of generally mountain land has been affected so far. 

Meanwhile in Cataluña a fire is raging close to Ventalló in Gerona. The blaze has destroyed over 1,000 hectares of land in five municipalities, most of itforestry. Another fire is currently raging in Capmany, in the district of l’Alt Empordà, where several local inhabitants have been evacuated from their homes and a campsite has also beenevacuated. More than 540 residents of the Alto Ampurdán region were evacuated from their homes on Friday night, but were back home for Saturday. It’s thought the fire was started deliberately, given that it is thought to have started close tomidnight. Police have arrested a man suspected of starting several of the wildfires.

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Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI):

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite also enhanced the previous image from 10 August 2006 by including the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) which is strongly correlated to surface temperatures and surface moisture status.


ECPC Fire Weather Forecast: 

The GFMC displays selected and daily updated  Experimental Climate Prediction Center (ECPC)  Fire Weather Forecasts for Europe. These examples allow a quicklook and provide daily and weekly total forecasts. For background information refer to the ECPC products description page.

FWI forecast for the next 36 hrs
FWI forecast for the next week
Surface temperatures forecast for the next week
Precipitation amount forecast for the next week
Relative humidity forecast for the next week
Windspeed forecast for the next week

(Source: ECPC Fire Weather Index Forecast)

The forecast indicates no extreme fire danger for Galicia. The current fire danger, however, is due to unusually high day temperatures, low precipitation and low relative humidity

Formore details on fires in Spain:





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