Government orders Civil Protection to open fire investigation in Gerês

The source, linked to the MAI, recalled that, during the fire fighting, there was an accident with a Portuguese fire fighting aircraft, which caused the pilot's death.

The Ministry of Internal Administration today ordered the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority (ANEPC) to open an investigation into the fire that broke out in the Peneda-Gerês National Park, an official source told Lusa.

The source, linked to the MAI, recalled that, during the fire fighting, there was an accident with a Portuguese fire fighting aircraft, which caused the pilot's death.

Regarding the investigation into the accident with the 'Canadair' crashed, a source from the investigation told Lusa that it is Spain's responsibility.

Due to the fact that the accident happened in Spain, a source from the Office for the Prevention and Investigation of Aircraft Accidents and Railway Accidents (GPIAAF) explained to Lusa that it is the Spanish authorities that have the responsibility and the competence to carry out the investigation .

Initially it was thought that the aircraft had crashed in national territory, but ANEPC indicated that the accident "occurred in Spanish territory, one to two kilometers from the Portuguese border".

GPIAAF explained that it moved a team to the site because, when it received notification of the accident, it was not yet known that the same had happened in Spanish territory, adding this body that is collaborating with its Spanish counterpart.

The 65-year-old Portuguese pilot died on the spot, despite attempts by members of the National Institute for Medical Emergency (INEM), while the second pilot, Spanish and 39 years old, was assisted on the spot and transported in “serious condition” to the Viana do Castelo Hospital.

In a press release, ANEPC stated that it was a heavy amphibious aircraft (Canadair CL215), from the Special Device for Fighting Rural Fires, of the Centro de Means Aéreos de Castelo Branco, which participated in operations to combat a plowing fire. in the National Park of Peneda Gerês, parish of Lindoso, municipality of Ponte da Barca, in the district of Viana do Castelo.

The plane crashed in an accident near the Alto do Lindoso Dam, following a scooping operation (replenishing the water tank), he added.

According to the website of the National Authority for Emergency and Civil Protection, by 14:25 they were fighting the 132 operational flames, supported by 34 vehicles and 11 Portuguese and Spanish air media.

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