Thick Haze From Forest Fires Hit Brunei-Muara

Thick Haze From Forest Fires Hit Brunei-Muara

17 March 2005

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Bandar Seri Begawan – Brunei-Muara has been experiencing a thick haze in the last few days as the result of forest fires at the Lambak Kiri area and parts of the Berakas Forest Reserve.

According to Pengiran Haji Shaharuddin, Assistant Superintendent of Fire Services, around 20 hectares of forest have been destroyed by the fire believed to have started from the Lambak Kiri area last Thursday.

The fire has since spread to the Berakas Forest Reserve.

The present windy conditions also attributed to the spreading of the fire.

Fire fighters are on alert round the clock to monitor and contain the blaze from causing untoward damages.

A total of five fire tenders and 31 fire fighters from the Special Squad, the Berakas, Tumasek and Bandar Seri Begawan fire stations under the supervision of Chief Operation Officer, Awang Shahbandi bin Haji Abdul Halim, were deployed at the affected areas to contain the blaze from spreading.

The operation also entailed the services of three helicopters from the Royal Brunei Armed Forces in extinguishing the forest fires from the air and three water supply tanks from the Water Services of the Public Works Department.

Awang Haji Hamdani bin Omar, the Ketua Kampung of the Lambak Kiri National Housing and the Indigenous Citizens Land Scheme area, related to RTB that the fire was spotted last Thursday at around 5pm and promptly called the fire hotline about the matter.

But, he said, the housing area is safe from the blaze. There were no injuries or personal damages reported.

Awang Haji Hamdani recalled that the forest fire is the third of such kind to occur since he became the Ketua Kampung.

In view of the fire, Awang Haji Hamdani advised residents to refrain from engaging in open burning.

He said that residents could dispose of their refuse or unwanted items such as planks and branches through the services of the garbage collector.

Motorists plying the Jerudong and Muara highway especially in the vicinity of the Berakas Forest Reserve area affected by the fire are advised to drive with extra caution at all times because of poor visibility due to the thick smoke.

Members of the public are also reminded to immediately call the Fire Services Hotline 995 should they spot any bush fires. — Courtesy of Radio Television Brunei


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