Advance fire teams from six European countries – Bulgaria, Romania, Germany, France, Finland and Norway – will arrive in Greece ahead of the fire season, the decision was made during a summit meeting in Athens on Thursday.
These units, which will be based in Athens, Larisa and Tripoli, are funded by the European Commission.
At a workshop at the Ministry of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection, it was decided that the Greek Armed Forces would have the primary responsibility for manning ground patrols to prevent forest fires, thereby freeing up fire and police personnel.
The meeting, which was attended by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, decided to increase aerial surveillance with single-engine Air Tractor aircraft and PZL aircraft in areas with a fire danger level of 4 or 5.
It is also announced that the total special unit fire department to extinguish forest fires will be 590 people, 90 of whom have received special training.
It was also said at the meeting that the municipalities have been given the right to clean up lands whose owners are negligent or unknown.
For the first time, civil protection evacuation procedures are being developed for high-risk areas in tourist sites, as well as archaeological sites.