Spanish firefighters protest for better working conditions

The BRIF (Reinforcement Brigade Forest Fires) took the streets of Madrid to demand better working conditions.

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The Independent Online

Over 500 fire-fighters took to the streets of Madrid calling for better work conditions, fair pay and professional recognition. The protesters made their point by smacking firewall spades on the road and carrying chainsaws.

The march started at Neptuno Square to Sol, reaching its climax in front of the ministry of agriculture were participants "made noise to call for the Ministers attention", they believe that they are not respected by the government enough for the dangerous work they do and are demanding better working conditions and pay.

Though the BRIF has been on strike since July many have been working as volunteers during a particularly difficult season. This has been Spain's hottest ever summer and flames have destroyed more than 160,000 acres of forest since January in over 1,500 wildfires.

Just last week Spain were forced to deploy soldiers to beat back a fire in the north-west in the town of Cualedro that eventually destroyed over 12,000 acres of forest.