San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Wildfire burns 100 hectares of Chirripó National Park

A wildfire detected Monday morning within an area of Chirripó National Park– home to Costa Rica’s highest mountain – has affected about 100 hectares of La Amistad International Park, near the country’s border with Panama in the Southern Zone.

Authorities from the Environment Ministry said that five brigades of nine firemen each, seven teams of Chirripó guides, 20 people from the community and 12police officers, among others, are in the area to secure the perimeter and to stop people from entering the park at fire-risk areas.

The National Emergency Commission (CNE) declared a green alert and sent supplies to teams based at five control points around the park’s boundaries. The CNE sent food, water, blankets and communications equipment.

Hiking trails at the park are not in direct or indirect danger, and the park remains open for tourists, said Rónald Chang, regional director of the National System of Conservation Areas.

“Tourists are safe. At this point the area of the trails is not at risk. If anything happens, we will close the area immediately,” he said.

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