To the Editor:
The purpose of my letter is to refer to the fires that are plaguing Greece and to indicate from my experience ways to help prevent them as much as possible. Fires can start in a variety of ways, from arson, lightning, carelessness, but one of the main ways is from glass objects such as bottles whose bottom is round and is like the lens of a magnifying glass which, as we know from childhood on the island, the lens can focus the sun’s rays to start a fire.
I will refer to an event that happened to me 30 years ago when I went to Greece for the summer and stayed in a summer house at the foot of Hymettus that my brother had rented. It was noon and I was sitting on the porch and suddenly, without anyone across the dirt road that was on the side of the mountain, smoke appeared and immediately a flame followed and the mountain caught fire – but it quickly went out because there were not many trees nearby.
It seemed strange to me and I went to see how the fire started and where it started I found a broken bottle and the round bottom of it like a magnifying glass was the cause of the fire, I wrote to the local newspaper about this but no one paid attention.
Here are a few tips to help reduce fires: first of all not to throw glass bottles in the countryside (forests, roads, and in the gardens of houses with dry brush) and if possible mobilize the volunteers and the army to collect them since they are scattered everywhere. The owners of houses should not leave dry grasses in their gardens and if they are near a forest, they should not have trees near their houses, and indoors they should not leave electrical devices on. Cigarettes are also dangerous when they are thrown, still lit, out the windows of cars, so everyone should be careful.