A heat wave is expected to affect all of Europe during the second half of August, according to Correio da Manhã, with temperatures increasing by up to 20 degrees.
According to meteorologists, a warm weather front will come from Africa, with the first signs coming from the Azores which will bring warm drier air to Portugal, with temperatures expected to exceed 40 degrees.
Responding to the news, Miguel Albuquerque, who was visiting the city fire break in Caminho dos Pretos, said that the Regional Government has been pro-active in its fire-fighting stance, and is prepared for the summer heat wave. However, he said, he was unable to predict as to whether the island will suffer from a greater number of fires during this period.
In his official statement, he confirmed that:
“On the issues of fires, we can never predict the future, especially as the last big fire we had was in February, in Calheta. But the idea is this: right now, all POCIF (Operational Plan for Combating Forest Fires) patrols are being carried out. We have the helicopter ready and working with its respective teams; the multidisciplinary teams and the fire watchtowers have been renovated; we are using surveillance drones; we are carrying out extensive fire break work both in Caminho dos Pretos and other areas such as São Roque; our firefighters are prepared and working with the most up to date equipment; and therefore the prevention work has been done, but there is such a thing as a ‘random factor’ which no one can predict!”
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