Chile – Forest Fire Update (ONEMI, CONAF, Meteo Chile) (ECHO Daily Flash of 9 February 2017)

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◾Numerous wildfires have been burning across the country over the past month, causing casualties and damages.

◾The National Office of Emergencies of Interior Ministry (ONEMI) reported, as of 9 February at 7.00 UTC, 45 forest fires active, 30 controlled, 12 extinguished and 3 still in combat in the regions of Valparaiso, Metropolitan, Biobio and Maule.

◾ONEMI reported, as of the same date, 11 deaths and over 1 900 houses destroyed. Over 100 people remain evacuated.

◾Over the next 24 hours, a slight drop in temperatures and gusty winds (up to 40 km/h) may affect the central regions and the coastal areas of Atacama and Coquimbo regions. As of 9 february at 7.00 UTC, ONEMI has issued a Red Alert for the regions of Valparaiso, Metropolitana, Maule and Biobio.

◾Upon a request by the national authorities for additional support to the planning of operations and to provide analysis and recommendations on the fire behavior, on 6 February five additional technical experts joined the existing EUCP Team in Santiago. In total, 14 experts have been deployed under the Union Civil Protection Mechanism. As of 9 February, seven technical experts are conducting field assessments in the Biobio and Maule regions.