Russians burn forests on the protected Kinburn spit: the sea along the coast is covered with ash and burnt tree bark (video)

Russians burn forests on the protected Kinburn spit
Russians burn forests on the protected Kinburn spit
© Photo: video screenshot
Kostiantyn Golubtsov

Kostiantyn Golubtsov

Published: August 13 2022 at 08:03 pm

The forest around three villages - Pokrovka, Vasylivka, and Pokrovsky Khuteri - was completely burned. In Pokrovka, absolutely everything is covered in ash, in Vasylivka, things are even worse.

With the beginning of the war, Kinburnska spit found itself in the most difficult situation of all the seaside resorts of Ukraine. Because of its proximity to the front line, remoteness from administrative centers (both Ukrainian and occupation), Kinbourn and its inhabitants remained face to face with constant fires.

In the pre-war years, the edge of the Kinburn spit was a popular vacation spot for Ukrainians who prefer secluded leisure time in a wooded area near the sea.

Thanks to the Nibulon company pier built here, regular transportation by comfortable hydrofoil vessels from Mykolaiv and Ochakov was carried out to this place.

Due to its popularity, the beaches of the pier area were organized. There was infrastructure here - a cafe, beach attractions, canopies, umbrellas, sunbeds, a shower, a toilet and trash cans. At the moment, none of this remains - everything has been destroyed and burned.

The central part of the Black Sea coast of the Kinburn Spit near the village of Pokrovka was not so popular among mass tourists, but it was chosen by lovers of informal recreation. Artists, musicians, hippies, nudists and just people who like to live in a tent on the beach, jeepers, bikers. Many of those who, before the seizure of Crimea in 2014, rested in Lysia Bay, on Fiolent, Tarkhankut, or Mangup, began to come to Pokrovka.

With the beginning of a full-scale war, fires on the Kinburn Spit continue daily, with several fires burning at the same time. The forest around three villages - Pokrovka, Vasylivka, and Pokrovsky Khuteri - was completely burned.

According to a local forestry employee, who asked not to be named, as of August 3, 1,600 hectares of pine forest had already burned. The main forest attractions of Kinburn - "Herodotus forest", "Volyzhyn forest" and "Pushkin's oak" have so far been saved from fire by the efforts of residents and forestry.

According to a message on Facebook by local activists, only on August 1, forestry workers extinguished the fire from morning to 9 p.m., and they managed to save large areas of the forest. Forestry workers have been working in this mode for 4 months.

The scale of the fire is such that absolutely everything in Pokrovka is covered with ash, although Pokrovka is further from the source of ignition than Vasylivka. Things are even worse there.

At sea along the Kinburn spit, the surface of the water is covered with ash and pieces of burnt bark. There is smoke and the smell of burning in the air, there is nowhere to hide from it.

For the indigenous inhabitants of the Kinburn Spit, these forests are more precious than life. They were planted on clean sand by the efforts of the local forest farm, the grandfathers of the current residents in the middle of the last century. At that time, this work led many foresters to their graves, because poisons dangerous to humans were used in the USSR to root and protect the young forest from pests. Now their grandchildren are risking their lives and health, saving the Kinburn forest from destruction.

The small population of Kinburn Spit is now in a situation where saving the drowning is the business of the drowning themselves. More precisely, burning ones, because only they are able to put out forest fires, there is no one else. Under occupation, without income, without food delivery, without even the possibility to leave.

We will remind that strong fires started on the Kinburn Spit at the beginning of May. Even then there was nothing to extinguish the fire - the equipment and fuel were taken away by the Russian military, who controlled the exit to the mainland. Volunteers and local residents collected gasoline and canisters, as well as parts for repairing fire engines . The situation with extinguishing is complicated by the fact that in the forest there is broken equipment, stretchers and mines that have not exploded.

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