The forest fire in Felgentreu continues to spread. Despite the extinguishing efforts of the emergency services, the fire has now spread to around 27 hectares.
Felgentreu – The forest fire in an ammunition-contaminated area in Felgentreu, Brandenburg, does not end despite the extinguishing operation from the air with helicopters and aircraft. According to the head of operations, Rico Valentin, the fire had reached an extent of around 27 hectares on Thursday evening: "The spread is increasing moderately and slowly". On Friday morning, a drone will provide information about the current size of the fire, as a spokesman for the district of Teltow-Fläming announced on Friday morning.
Firefighting planes and helicopters fight forest fires in Brandenburg
The fire has been raging since Wednesday evening on a former military training area in Brandenburg, not far from the small town of Jüterbog, which has a population of 12,000. Due to the danger posed by old ammunition on the ground of the area, it has so far only been possible for the emergency services to fight the fire from the air. So far, a firefighting aircraft from the Harz Mountains and a helicopter of the Federal Police have been used. As the Federal Police had announced on Twitter early Friday morning, the police helicopter would have dropped at least 48,600 liters of water on the fire at that time.
Despite the extinguishing operation, the forest fire near Jüterbog has now spread to 27 hectares. © dpa/Cevin Dettlaff
According to the head of operations, a fire watch was also set up on Friday night. Firefighting is rather unconventional for the state, as only fire-fighting helicopters have been used in Brandenburg for operations of this kind so far. "This is an experiment that we are doing here. We are thus gathering initial insights," says Head of Operations Valentin. Since Friday morning, a second fire-fighting aircraft has arrived, so that two aircraft are used to continue fighting the fire. Whether the helicopter would continue to be available is still unclear.
Forest fire in Brandenburg: Housing estates not endangered by fire
The emergency services had already detected detonations of old ammunition in the affected area, but not over a long distance. Housing estates were not endangered by the fire, according to the operations management. This is not the first time that the site of the former military training area has been affected by a forest fire. Already in 2019, a fire destroyed around 750 hectares of forest there.
Meanwhile, the risk of forest fires in Brandenburg is increasing. "With every day that there is no precipitation, the forest fire danger situation will increase," said Brandenburg's forest fire protection officer, Raimund Engel, to dpa. According to the German Weather Service, it will remain dry in the coming days, and fresh gusty winds will come from the northeast. A spokesman for the DWD explains in a press release: "If the wind picks up, then of course it is unfavorable." Then a gust of wind could be enough for a fire to spread.