STphotochallenge - Forests - Uttarakhand forest fires, India, 2016
This image may be saddening but I find it a way to create awareness about Forest Fires. Perhaps the most overlooked aspect of fighting forest fires is communication. It is vital that the proper authorities be notified as soon as possible when a fire occurs. And this applies to each kind of fire accident and disaster.
The forest fires in Uttarakhand (India), that destroyed over 3500 acres of green cover lasted for about two months, caught attention of the government only through Social Media and news channels.
Till then it had severely affected the wildlife reserves across the state and claimed human and animal lives. Experts said that black carbon from the smoke and ash covered the Himalayan glaciers and may have caused them to melt faster. The glaciers are the lifeline of major rivers flowing through northern India.
What could be the possible causes of Forest Fire?
Forest fires always start by one of two ways - naturally caused or human caused. Natural fires are generally started by lightning, with a very small percentage started by spontaneous combustion of dry fuel such as sawdust and leaves. On the other hand, human-caused fires can be due to any number of reasons that includes smoking, recreation, equipment, and miscellaneous. Human-caused fires constitute the greater percentage of forest fires in our forests, but natural fires constitute the great majority of the total area burned. This is because human-caused fires are usually detected early in their duration, and therefore they are usually contained easily. Natural fires, on the other hand, can burn for hours before being detected by firefighting authorities.
So Stay Alert and Communicate! A small initiative made at the correct hour can save millions...