Aust-Agder forest fire rages on – Appeal to Prime Minister

Aust-Agder forest fire rages on – Appeal to Prime Minister

13 June 2008

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In Froland, in the county of Aust-Agder where the forest fire is raging for the fifth day, a group of 27 firemen were surrounded by the flames in the early hours of Friday morning, and had to flee for their lives.

The wind suddenly changed direction, and the crew had to drop their equipment and run, says fre chief Ove Frigstad of the Oestre Agder Fire Department to NRK.

On Friday morning the crews were battling the flames on five fronts around the hamlet of Mykland. They did not have the fire under control, but no homes were under direct threat.

The firemen and volounteers are supported by helicopters which are dousing the flames, but the fire chief says there is little hope of stopping the fires completely before a substantial rainfall comes their way.

However, the forecast only calls for minor showers, and what is worse, coupled with thunder. Lightning could start new fires, and make the situation even worse.

The mayor of Froland, Sigmund Pedersen, on Friday appealed to Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg for more resources to help fight the fire, which is said to be Norway’s worst forest fire in 50 years.

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