Fires in Northeast China

Firesin NortheastChina

1 November 2005

In northeastern China, along the border to Russia,  a forest fire erupted in the night of  23 October 2005 in Huma County,  which belongs to the highly forested Da Hinggan Ling Range. Because of sudden winds, the fire escaped from a fire break that local forest workers were burning to protect the surrounding mountain forests. 

The devastating fire spread to the adjacent Heihe, a city at the Sino-Russian border inside Heilongjiang Province, because of strong winds. The fires near Heihe City were eradicated on 27 October 2005 and the blaze along the border was brought under control on Sunday, 30 October 2005.

The raging fires in Huma County left 140 people homeless and destroyed more than 30 homes, though no casualties were reported.

(Image courtesy MODIS)

24 October 2005

25 October 2005
29 October 2005
31 October 2005

These images of the region were captured by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite during overpasses on the 24, 25, 29, and 31 October 2005 and were selected to show the development of the fire. Shortwave- and near-infrared observations from MODIS have been added to these images to make burn scars (magenta) stand out better from vegetation (bright green) and naturally bare or thinly vegetated ground (pale pink or tan). Active fires are marked in red and at the northwestern perimeter of the fire, a small area of bright pink indicates areas that were actively flaming at the time of the overpass. The high-resolution images provided above have a spatial resolution of 250 meters per pixel.




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