The fires are relentless. The violence of fire devastates the tropical forests of Guanacaste. This time, the affected area is Las Delicias of Garza in Nosara, where the sector of Las Delicias has been burning for four days now and the fire has spread to the community of La Esperanza. It has already consumed some 300 hectares (740 acres) of forest.
The fire began on Saturday, April 4th, and since then, volunteer firefighters have been struggling to take control of the situation, working day and night.
According to Ryan Bombard, Nosara’s fire chief, it has been hard for them to control the fire because due to a shortage of water.
“The situation is hard due to the shortage of water. What we do is rely on those parts where the street passes through and make circles to control the fire,” Bombard said. He added that “about 20 houses have been in danger but now we have it 80% controlled.”
According to Bombard, the dry vegetation makes it easy for the flames to spread rapidly, mostly affecting primary forest.
The fire might have been caused by burning garbage. “Some neighbors were burning garbage in a lot for agricultural planting, and they didn’t have a circle or anything and that’s how the fire starts,” said Bombard.
So far, only eight people from Nosara’s volunteer firefighters are doing the control work and they still haven’t received help from firefighters from other areas of Guanacaste.
Meanwhile, several community members and businesses are assisting with water and food for the firefighters.
Javier Guevara, of the Nicoya Firefighters, said they were in the area on Sunday, April 5th, but couldn’t establish contact with the brigades who are tending to the incident.
“We were there on April 5th and yes, in effect, we were able to verify that there is a focal point of fire, but we couldn’t contact the interested parties. However we are going to contact the Nosara firefighters to see how we can help them,” said Guevara.
The affected area is made up of private properties so it is not the jurisdiction of forest firefighters.
According to neighbors in adjacent communities like the Las Huacas mountain neighborhood in Guiones, the glow of the flames can be seen at night and columns of smoke can be seen several kilometers away during the day.