This theme is a little sad – arson in our beautiful forests. In the small territory that Croatia consists of – we are home to no less than eight national parks, and among the best known are Plitvica (plit-vit-za) and Krka (as in Captain Kirk-a). These two are the natural culmination of several rivers flowing to a midpoint, creating waterfalls, cascades of rivers and lakes on a soft limestone bed, surrounded by flora, fauna and wildlife. I have yet to see any wildlife (Aussies excluded), but rumor has it that they are there, obviously they are afraid of people.
Last week near Pakostane, along the forested highway, one forest fire erupted. Fires are put out by air, little yellow airplanes called Kanaders. Water is taken from Lake Vrana in the semi-inland area of Croatia, and the fires are doused from the sky. However the devastation can occur very quickly.
Sad to say, over the past few days there were two incidents of arson – the first day, one fire – and the second, three burning simultaneously. This sort of thing really shakes up the whole community. Rumor has it that arsonists have been apprehended, but I personally think this is more wishful thinking than reality.
What can be done? I am told that there are chemicals out there that can be placed in a forested area and left alone, only to ignite three hours later, giving the perpetrator plenty of time to get away (even cross the border, because Croatia is so small).
In 2007 there were more than 750 fires set, and the drought didn’t help much. Details in the following link:
It is a problem that with increased tourism, there is not enough ways to control those who want to destroy Croatia’s natural beauty. Arson here is considered a serious crime, similar to horse thievery in the Old West.