Fire Emergency in Sumatra

FireEmergency in Riau Province, Sumatra, Indonesia

9 June 2003

Latest Satellite Image:

This MODIS scene from 8 June 2003 showing fires burning in Sumatra, Indonesia. Click on the image to see a 1-km resolution.

GFMC Report:
Based on the Southeast Asia Fire Danger Rating System. All indices are showing HIGH and EXTREME Fire Danger Ratings except for one, the Drought Code, which remains LOW. It has been approximately 25 days without rain and the local people having been lighting fires on a daily basis with little control efforts occurring.  Fine Herbaceous Fuel Moisture samples taken on 2 June 2003 near Kerinci indicate the following:  Dead fuels: 8%  Live Fuels: 75%.  Daily weather observations are showing temperatures exceeding 100 F (33°C) and Relative Humidities reaching a low of 35%, this translates to a Probability of Ignition of approximately 70% for fire brands that cause “spotting”.  Winds have been steady during the peak of the daily burn period (1000-1600) from the south at around 5-15++ km/hr.  Numerous smoke columns can be observed from space.

The Governor of Riau issued an announcement (Pengumuan)  on 12 April 2003 for all companies and local people not to burn during this dry season. He will call for a meeting at 0900 on Thursday, 12 June 2003 to discuss the situation.

The Meteorological ServicesDivision of Singapore provides a daily updated schematic of areasaffected by fires and smoke haze within the South East Asian region.Additionally, regional surface winds are displayed.

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Latest map of surface winds andsmoke haze/hot spots observed over cloud-free areas
(Source: Meteorological ServicesDivision of Singapore)

Forecastsof winds and surface pressure for the South East Asian region basedon Numerical Weather Product Models are also providedby Meteorological ServicesDivision of Singapore.

Fire Weather and Fire Danger Monitoring and Early Warning

The Regional South East Asia Fire Danger Rating System (SEA FDRS) is a joint effort between the Canadian Forest Service and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), in cooperation with various partners in Indonesia.

Fine Fuel Moisture Code

Fire Danger in SE Asia

Fine Fuel Moisture Code

The parameters for the Fire WeatherIndex (Fine Fuel Moisture Code, Duff Moisture Code, Drought Code, Initial SpreadIndex, Buildup Index) can be found directly at:

The GFMC displays selected and daily updated global andAsia-Pacific ExperimentalClimate Prediction Center (ECPC)  Fire Weather Forecasts.These examples allow a quicklook and provide daily and weekly total forecastsand forecasted monthly totals. For background information refer to the ECPCproducts description page.

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Fire Weather Index (FWI) forecast for  thisweek (left) and the predictedFWI total for next month (right) for the Western Pacific (1-3) and the PacificOcean (4-6) regions.
The weekly total forecast  refer to 00:00 hrsUTC,which is local noon at dateline (180° longitude). Forecast time is 12:00 hrsnoon UTC (Greenwich)corresponding to local evening time in mainland and insular SE Asia.
(Source: ECPCFire Weather Index Forecast)

The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and Project Fire Fight Southeast Asia (PFFSEA) have launched the Fire Bulletin, a weekly analyses and information on fire, haze, and related issues in Indonesia.

Further information: 

  • Regional South East Asia Wildland Fire Network

  • IFFN Country Notes

  • Haze Prevention Group
    The industrial initiative to combat haze in SE Asia provides a website which includes information about the objectives of this industrial initiative and projects implemented to reduce wildfires and haze in Indonesia.

  • The ASEAN Haze Action Online provides the following information:

    • Monitoring: Hyperlinks to institutions involved in regional monitoring and prediction of fire and smoke haze

    • Haze News: ASEAN Transboundary Haze Update (updated daily)

    • Intranet: Information and possible participation in the ASEAN Haze Action Online Intranet Information Services (for associated registered participants)

    • Mobilization Plan: Model Fire Suppression Mobilization Plan

    • Inventory: Inventory and analysis of forest and land fire suppression capabilities

    • Haze Forum: Communication platform on fire and smoke-haze issues in the ASEAN region

    • Calendar: Fire and haze-related events can be identified by a search modus

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