Forest fire warning in place across much of Latvia

Take note – story published 1 year ago

While recent rainfall has dampened down the risk of forest fire in eastern parts of Latvia, there remains a considerable danger across a large proportion of the country, according to the Latvian Environment, Geology and Meteorology Center (LVĢMC).

In a May 18 bulletin, the LVĢMC said the period of May 18-21 will see "potentially dangerous" conditions for forest fires across all of Kurzeme and most of Vidzeme and Zemgale regions with only the eastern Latgale region not under a yellow alert. 

Members of the public are advised to be responsible in the forests and to avoid the use of naked flames. Dangerous fires should be immediately informed.

May 1 saw the start of the forest fire-safe period across the entire territory of Latvia. In order to reduce the chances of a forest fire starting, a number of important prohibitions and restrictions have been established during the forest fire-free period, and non-compliance may result in administrative, civil and criminal liability.

Forest fire
Forest fire

During the fire-free period of the forest, the following is prohibited in forest and swamp territories:

  • creating an open flame in the forest and swamp, with the exception of recreational facilities that do not allow fire to spread beyond this place. In recreational facilities, the fire place must be extinguished completely after use;
  • dropping burning or smoldering matches, cigarette butts and other objects in the forest, swamps or on the roads crossing them;
  • carrying out blasting works in the forest and swamps and organizing shooting lessons (except for appropriately arranged places);
  • using tracer bullets, flares and props made of inflammable and smoldering material;
  • driving motor vehicles through the forest and swamps off the roads, except for cases when it is necessary for extinguishing fires, providing assistance in the event of accidents, forest management and maintenance of utility networks or their accident prevention;
  • carrying out any type of burning (including burning of felling residues) without coordination with the relevant territorial unit of the State Forest Service.

Forest owners must ensure that forest roads and tracks are freed from fallen trees and bushes, so that forest fire engines can move freely if necessary.


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