The Minister of Citizen Protection Michalis Chrysochoidis described this year’s planning of the Civil Protection for the fire season as, a breakthrough in the field of fire protection in our country and standard work, far from “retrospective regret” and a way to prevent new tragedies.
Tthe details were announced by the Deputy Minister of Civil Protection and Crisis Management, Nikos Hardalias, in a press conference given at noon at the “Faros” Building in Maroussi.
Mr. Hardalias provided a detailed plan for the prevention and response to fires and the leasing more aircraft for this year but at the same time officially announced the promotion of the largest non-military re-equipment program to date, amounting to 1.76 billion euros.
This program, called “AIGIS”, will be discussed tomorrow at the inter-ministerial meeting for the first time, in order to proceed immediately. The “AIGIS” program, among other things, sees the replacement of all “old” Canadairs, while at the same time a reorganization program of the Fire Brigade will proceed, which envisages the recruitment of 3,000 new permanent firefighters, in order to solve the problem of the high average age of staff.
In particular, in a meeting that Mr. Chrysochoidis had with Mr. Hardalias after the press conference, they discussed the proposal that will be forwarded tomorrow to KYSEA, for the acquisition of eight new modern CL-515 Canadair aircraft, which will replace the old CL- 215s, while the CL-415s will be upgraded to a standard close to the CL-515s.
At the same time, according to the new plan of the Civil Protection, the purchase of a total of 36 new amphibious Air-Tractor aircraft will follow, which if the program is approved will be purchased by 2030.
As part of the readiness for immediate response to the fire and the supply of helicopters, a network of 40,000 liter water tanks has been created, which are placed in 13 locations in the territory for water intake in areas far from the sea or lakes.