Keywords: risk analysis, fire risk, GIS models, Vikos-Aoos National Park, forest fires, geographical information systems, satellite remote sensing, Greece, fire prevention management, risk management
Evaluation of forest fire risk and fire extinction difficulty at the mountainous park of Vikos-Aoos, Northern Greece: use of remote sensing and GIS techniques
In this study the potential of satellite remote sensing coupled with Geographical Information Systems (GIS) for the assessment of fire risk in and around the National Park of Vikos-Aoos, a mountainous area in Northern Greece, is examined. In order for this to be accomplished, recent satellite images of varying spatial resolutions (from 5–30 m) have been selected for processing, whereas satellite products as well as in-site information were integrated in a Geographic Information System. Subsequently, a fire risk GIS model was developed taking into account factors favouring the ignition of a forest fire, such as combustion parameters, inflammable material, slope, proximity to the road network, and urban areas and distance from water sources. It was found that despite the relatively small size of the National Park of Vikos-Aoos and its pronounced topography, the integration of satellite remote sensing with GIS techniques, can substantially support in terms of fire prevention management of the Park.