Satellites identified 38,900 forest fire incidents last year: Space Department

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Satellites identified 38,900 incidents of forest fires last year, information of which was shared with the state forest departments, the Department of Space has said in its annual report.

The report said active forest fire monitoring was carried out using satellite data from February to June in 2018. Forest fires are a regular occurrence during the summers.

“About 38,900 active forest fire locations were identified during the season,” the annual report of 2018-2019 said.

The report was tabled before Parliament during the on-going Budget Session.

The information on forest fires was shared with Forest Survey of India, DehraDun.

Additionally, fire alert SMSes are also sent to selected state forest departments, the report said.

One of the major events that was monitored using medium resolution multi spectral satellite data was the fire at Kurangani hills in Tamil Nadu in March 2018, it said.

A major fire event in the vicinity of Vaishnovdevi temple was also monitored from May 22 to 26, 2018. “Up to March 2019, about 15,657 active fire locations were identified and burnt area mapping for major forest fire in Bandipur, Karnataka, was carried out and information was provided to the state forest department,” the report added.