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Power transmission company issues jail-time alert over grassland burning

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Power transmission company issues jail-time alert  over grassland burning


Posted 25/04/2023

The power transmission company (Etesa) has warned of possible blackouts due to the indiscriminate burning of grasslands in areas close to high-tension towers and electrical transmission substations.

Etesa's warning comes after the Panama Fire Department attended a plant mass fire last weekend near the Panama II substation, in Rana de Oro, Pedregal district.

Carlos Mosquera Castillo, general manager of Etesas said that what happened over the weekend "endangered the continuity of the electrical system."  and added: "This practice is a crime punishable by Panamanian legislation, since it affects the forest ecosystem, endangers the lives of people residing in the affected area.”

He called on the community, in general, to comply with the law and avoid burning grasslands.

According to the law "whoever sets fire to plant masses will be punished with 1 to 3 years in prison and a fine of 50 to 150 days."

Meanwhile, the burning of grasslands and garbage is also penalized by the Mayor's Office of Panama. Based on a Mayoral Decree of January, 2018, establishes fines of $50 to $5,000 and up to 10 days of sanctions with community work, in addition to fines of $100 -$10,000and and with 20 to 200 days of community work for repeat offenders.


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