Torres del Paine and use of fire
In 2005 a fire caused by a tourist devastated 15 000 hectares of native vegetation in the Torres del Paine National Park. Careless visitor behavior and the influence of wind that quickly gave strength to the fire caused one of the biggest fires in the history of Torres del Paine.
Conaf estimates that since 1980 in Torres del Paine have been more than 18 fires caused by carelessness of tourists, affecting about 17,000 hectares of this beautiful place in Chilean Patagonia.
Most of the fires were caused by human action, neglect and reckless use of fire, like the last accident on February 14th, when the rain fortunately helped control the flames caused by an Israeli tourist, who made a bonfire in an unauthorized place in Torres del Paine National Park.
For this reason it is essential to respect the camping areas in Torres del Paine and indications of park officials.
If you plan to visit this amazing place in the Chilean Patagonia, we ask you to take extreme precaution with the fire. Take into consideration the following recommendations and help us care of Torres del Paine:
- In the Torres del Paine National Park you can camp only in authorized places.
- Do not throw cigarettes and matches on the ground. They can also cause fire and also pollute visually.
- You are not allowed to make any kind of bonfire outdoor. Fire can be set only in equipped marked places (shelters, areas for camping, etc.).. Before leaving the place, make sure that the fire is completely extinguished.
- In Torre del Paine is permitted only the use of camp stove (but you cannot enter the park with benzine stove)
- If you see an seat of fire and you cannot control it by yourself, immediately notify guard of park.
- Always let the guard of park know about any kind of plume of smoke in sight, even if it seems to be small and not dangerous.
- In the case of fire always run downhill the fire. The fire rises much faster uphill.
- Remember that in case of detecting an incident of this nature must be reported to the numbers: 130 (CONAF); 132 (Fire department) or 133 (Police).
In Chile, the season of forest fires begins in spring (October-November), when atmospheric conditions favor the spread of fire, and lasts almost until April-May. At this time you should be particularly careful in forests and grasslands.
Help us take care of Torres del Paine being responsible with the use of fire and denouncing the reckless behaviors.