Moscow,Russia — A total of 26 forest fires at an area totalling over 426hectares have been registered in Siberia, the information department of theRussian Ministry of Emergency Situations told Itar-Tass on Monday.
As many as 25 natural seats of fire at an area of 426.5hectares have been registered in the Siberian federal district at present, aministry official said.
He pointed out that one major fire has been reported. Amajor conflagration spot has been registered in the Chita region, its total areais 200 hectares, the ministry specified.
There is no threat to local oil and gas pipelines, topotentially hazardous and other facilities of the economy presented by theforest fires, according to the emergencies ministry.
The ministry specialists have forecasted an early beginningof the fire hazard season in Russian forest. This situation has been caused bythe early onset of spring, as well as small amount of snow and early end ofspring floods.
According to specialists of the emergencies ministry, thegrowth in the number of fires and their spread areas, as compared with 2006, isexpected in the Urals and North-Western federal districts.
Analogous indicators will not exceed the previousyears level in the rest of the Russian territory, the ministry believes.
However, the growth in the spending level for fire-fightingefforts is expected this year in the Far Eastern, Urals, North-Western andCentral regions.
The bulk of spending on fire-extinguishing efforts inforests was made last year in Siberia, the Far East, Northwest and Urals, theemergencies ministry officials reported.
The human factor is still reported to be among themain causes of fires in forests. In particular, the burning of last yearsdry grass by people starts fires in springtime.