Press release

Press release

Final exercise on forest fires organised by PPRD South 3 to assess the progress made by the partner countries during the project lifetime.

The huge and numerous forest fires that occurred this summer in the Mediterranean area show how much prepared services, sharing of knowledge and tools and international cooperation are needed to overcome them.

This is precisely the purpose of the PPRD-South III programme (Prevention, Preparedness and Response to Natural and Man-Made Disasters for the Southern Region), which supports cooperation among the national civil protection services of the Mediterranean. The aim is to be better prepared to better respond to natural or man-made disasters that may occur in the region.

Coming to an end after 3 years of activities, the PPRD South III project is organising a large-scale final exercise, bringing together remotely all its partner countries around a simulation exercise, which will place the participants in a situation where they will have to control a forest fire according to the following programme:

Tuesday morning 14 - Phase 1:

Fires are raging in southern Europe with a high risk reported in the southern countries. Fires have already occurred in Lebanon and Algeria. All European airborne resources are engaged on these fires. Numerous rescue columns have been sent by Europe. As the winds are not weakening, the fight will surely last for many days.

In this phase 1, the participants will be asked to analyse the initial situation and anticipate an unfavorable outcome, to prepare and present the national prevention plan.

Tuesday 14 afternoon - Phase 2:

As expected, the fire is spreading southwards. In France, Spain, Italy and Portugal, the situation seems to be stabilised but vigilance must be maintained and the fire brigades are exhausted. The first fires are reported in Lebanon, Jordan and Algeria. These three countries are requesting assistance from other southern Mediterranean countries and from Europe.

In this phase 2, the affected countries will have to ask for help from the EU and communicate to the population and the media.

Wednesday morning - Phase 3:

The fires in the affected countries are in full swing. First responders are arriving mainly by air. They are waiting to be picked up and sent to their areas of engagement.

In this phase 3, the affected countries will have to provide their plan of engagement of the means and explain how the units sent by Europe or the neighboring countries will be engaged, pushing the assisting and assisted countries to coordinate.

Wednesday afternoon - Phase 4:

The wind has died down. Rains and thunderstorms have started to limit the fires.

In this last phase, participants will have to give feedback on their management of the crisis. Were the prevention, preparation, operation and communication measures effective? What are the points that should be perpetuated and what are the avenues of improvement for future crises to be managed, and not only those related to forest fires?

Funded by the European Commission, the PPRD South III project brings together 8 countries: Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine and Tunisia and is implemented by the French, Italian and Spanish civil protection directorates.

Capacity building activities, legal and institutional advice and support to civil protection managers have been carried out during these three years, around three components: prevention, response, and communication with the populations and three objectives:

  • At the national level: to develop prevention, risk reduction and emergency preparedness actions in the countries concerned, in partnership with all government and civil society actors.
  • At the Mediterranean basin level: improve inter-state and regional collaboration and cooperation in order to be able to offer a coordinated response in case of need.
  • Consolidate institutional cooperation between the EU Civil Protection Mechanism and the civil protection agencies of the Mediterranean partner countries.

For more information, please contact Virginie Ramey:

virginie.ramey@pprdsud3.eu, Whatsapp :0033.6.38.55.60.23

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