“Portuguese society has never been so prepared” for summer forest fires, said Interior Minister Eduardo Cabrita, after the flag oath ceremony of 278 provisional guards (253 men and 25 women) of the GNR in Portalegre on 7th June.

During this year, “more than ever before, we are doing more than ever in self-protection, in programs such as Safe Village, Safe People, Resilient Villages, and we have prepared the means necessary for combat,” he added.

Eduardo Cabrita recalled that there are already “more air resources available than ever before”, adding that more than 8,000 elements of various services are already available to the surveillance and combat device (program).

A “very significant” investment is being made in the Integrated System of Emergency and Security Networks of Portugal (SIRESP), namely through the duplication of the mobile units, which go from four to eight, of electrical redundancy, where there are 18 new units, and the installation of a network of 451 satellite antennas.

“In addition, in the so-called SIRESP GL system, which is an automatic reference system for all vehicles affected by the device, we are also doing very much in a very short time,” said Eduardo Cabrita.

The Minister also pointed out that ‘our aim is not to impose fines’ on owners who did not clean the land, ‘our aim is to ensure cleanliness’. At present, the authorities are warning all landlords who have not complied with the law to do so.

“I wanted to point out that the GNR over these six months has done more than five thousand sessions of awareness” on the issue of rural fires “that directly reached almost 150 thousand Portuguese,” he said.