News from the UN: Report on the FAO/ITTO International Expert Meeting on Forest Fire Management, ANNEX 6 (IFFN No. 24 – April 2001)

Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)

Report on the
FAO/ITTO International Expert Meeting on Forest Fire Management
Rome, Italy, 7-9 March 2001

(IFFN No. 24 – April 2001, 78-98)


Provisional 12 Legal and Operational Checklists for Developing Forest Fire Emergency Agreements (Bilateral or Multi-lateral)

  1. National Legislation promoting International Agreements and establishing the framework for such Agreements (This requirement may vary by country in terms of process)

  1. An example exists between Canada and USA
  2. An example exists between USA and Mexico
  1. Annual Operating Plan specifying details of how to accomplish emergency assistance.

  2. Protocols to promote technical exchanges of personnel between countries (a non-emergency assistance)


I National Legislation or Other Enabling Protocols for Establishing Contents (Elements) for Agreements:

  1. Establish Agreements between Governments for emergency assistance if they do not exist. Determine appropriate channels for establishing Agreements. This will differ by country as how this is to be done.
  2. Identify the Central Agency or Contact Point to coordinate the exchange of resources.
  3. Specify Sending Party and Receiving Party.
  4. Specify type of resources that may be sent or received.
  5. Specify how costs will be allocated. Usually Receiving Party pays.
  6. Specify time for reimbursements.
  7. Specify who controls resources.
  8. Specify how to cover losses and damages.
  9. Specify the process for recalling resources to return them to sending party.
  10. Specify Liability arrangements for damages (both ways). Fatal accidents, insurance, etc.
  11. Specify qualifications of people.
  12. Specify how to mediate disputes.

Note: Principle for success: Good will and practical solutions are essential in developing Agreements


II Checklist for Annual Operating Plan to Provide Emergency Fire Assistance (Bilaterally or Multi-laterally)

  1. State purpose of assistance.
  2. Cite authorities.
  3. Detail general procedures
  1. Who requests (how?)
  2. Reimbursements
  3. Identify types of resources
  4. Personnel
  1. Daily rate and pay
  2. Lodging
  3. Meals and travel
  4. Medical costs, insurance coverage
  5. Safety, health and welfare
  6. Safety equipment
  7. Who provides liaison?
  8. Compensation claims for death and injury
  9. Specify indemnity procedures
  1. Equipment and supplies.
  2. Billing and payment procedures and currencies.
  3. Situation reporting daily.
  4. Authorization, signatures.
  5. Process for re-call of resources.
  6. Customs considerations.
  7. Resolution of logistical limitations and constraints.

Note 1: Successful emergency assistance requires careful prior planning and review.

Note 2: Elements may need to be adapted to suit the conditions existing in different countries


III Protocols for Technical Exchanges of Personnel Among Countries

  1. Authority
  2. Qualifications and Objectives
  3. Requests
  4. Procedures and Payment (loss, damage, injury)
  5. Documentation report that evaluates the exchange
  6. Signatures for Approval

Additional Notes:

Agreements, Operational Plans and Protocols could be to:

  1. Provide for exchanges of technical information, not people, on a recurring basis.
  2. Share information regarding individual serious fires to other partners.
  3. Exchange information regarding technical support in fighting fires from private vendors who supply equipment.
  4. Consider contract requirements for aircraft.
  5. Determine responsibilities and opportunities for providing technical assistance to developing countries. Identify countries or organizations to provide such assistance.


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