News Local €11,500 monthly salary offered for pilot of firefighting plane

€11,500 monthly salary offered for pilot of firefighting plane

A firefighting airplane of the Forestry Department remains grounded because authorities cannot find a pilot, while an agreement to lease two helicopters for the same purpose has still not been signed, Phileleftheros reported on Thursday.

It said that these were among the issues discussed at a high level meeting held yesterday as government departments prepare for what is expected to be a particularly difficult summer in tackling fires.

The head of the Forestry Department Charalambos Alexandrou said that pilots have not expressed an interest because they consider the salary  — €11,500 a month — to be too low. Justice Minister Ionas Nicolaou undertook to resolve the problem by contacting pilots who had expressed an interest to fly police helicopters.

As regards the two helicopters leased by authorities every year to help firefighting efforts, it emerged that the tender launched by Forestry Department had been cancelled and direct negotiations are underway with the company which has expressed an interest and which had leased the helicopters in recent years.

Nicolaou said that all police helicopters will be available and said it was essential that all government departments are ready.

Defence Minister Savvas Angelides said the army should become more involved in fighting fires, while Interior Minister Constantinos Petrides said that there were 3875 fires last year, some of which could have developed into very dangerous fires for forest areas and communities.

He said that because of the dense vegetation following the heavy rains, this summer was expected to be a particularly difficult one and did not rule out additional extra measures being taken.

District officers said that work was already underway to clear the vegetation but said that extra funds would be required.

A new meeting will be held on May 15 to review preparations.

Read more

https://in-cyprus.com/authorities-brace-for-one-of-most-difficult-summers-for-fires/

Top Stories

19 patients at Famagusta General Hospital

Nineteen patients of COVID-19 are being treated at the Famagusta General Hospital, which operates as Reference Hospital. Out of these patients one is in the...

Pharmacies run out of flu shots

Association told CNA. As she said, people were in a state of panic to get the flu shot because of the COVID-19 situation and as...

Objections over only one woman on Deputy Ministry of Culture’s advisory group

Only one woman is part of the fledgling 16-member advisory committee on the establishment of a Deputy Ministry of Culture in Cyprus and this...

Britain says London mayor ‘bankrupted’ the capital

Britain is looking to force the body responsible for running London to sell off land and cut running costs as part of a fractious...

Nicosia hosts Cyprus-Greece-Egypt Trilateral Summit

Nicosia on Wednesday is hosting the 8th Cyprus-Greece-Egypt Trilateral Summit with the leaders of the three countries set to discuss several issues of mutual...

Taste

Squash soup

Ingredients: 1 kg pumpkin, cut into small cubes, approximately 5 cups 2 medium (400g) sweet potatoes, cut into cubes, approximately 2 ½ cups 1 chopped leek, only...

Mezedes

No visit to Cyprus is complete without enjoying the traditional meal of many small dishes known as ‘meze’. This large feast, which has been a...

Prawns with fried cheese, barley shaped pasta

Put the barley shaped pasta into a small pan with salted water, bring to a boil and when tender, drain. Peal the prawns leaving...

Salmon and shrimp sheftalies

Mix all ingredients for tabbouli in a bowl and keep to one side so flavours can combine. Prepare the sheftalies: wash and soak the casing...