Starting at noon on Monday, a fire ban was put in place throughout Västerbotten County, following a warning by SMHI (Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute) of a high risk of wildfires in forests and open areas. The decision comes as a response to the dry conditions prevalent in the region, with little relief expected from the anticipated rainfall later in the week.
Anders Jonsson, Chief of the Västerbotten County emergency services, explains the rationale behind the ban, stating:
–The forest and land are dry, and there is a growing concern about the deeper layers of forest drying out as well. The rainfall predicted in the coming days is unlikely to significantly impact the situation, as the drying trend is expected to persist.
Under the ban, all open fires in forests and open areas are prohibited. However, it is important to note that grilling in designated grill areas remains permissible.
Västerbotten County joins several other counties in implementing burning bans as a precautionary measure.
Regarding the timing of the decision, Jonsson clarifies
–The extent of heat and the rate of drying have varied across the country. Imposing a fire ban requires a considerable level of dryness, as it has a substantial impact on public safety and welfare.