Summer Fire alert

Charlie phase, the highest alert level for forest fires in Portugal, is underway until September 30.

This year, a total of 9,829 personnel, 2,196 vehicles, and 56 aircraft are mobilised across the country to react to any fire situation.

More than 230 watch posts have also been set up to monitor forest areas while four light helicopters and two Canadair aircraft are available as reinforcements.

Gil Martins, operational commander of the national civil protection authority, said: “This year we have more human and operational resources as well as a tactical command centre with seven vehicles and 13 tents.

“The worst enemy without a doubt is the extreme and severe drought that we are experiencing this year.”

During the Charlie phase, setting fire to garden waste or lighting fires and barbecues in the countryside is forbidden and can lead to heavy fines.