Mangalore: Fire in western ghats

Mangalore: Fire in western ghats

14 March 2008

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Mangalore, India — Forest officials have noticed fire in two places in the western ghats region of Dakshina Kannada district during the last three days.

District Forest Officer Vijaya Kumar told The Hindu that forest watchers noticed fire near Subrahmanya and Belthangady. The fire has been put off.

The fire was at ground level and had not spread to tree tops. He said such fires were not dangerous. Fires that reach the top of trees would cause maximum damage, and so far no such fire had been reported in the district.

Mr. Kumar said that the forest fire was common during this season, and in most cases the forest officials were helpless. “It takes a lot of time even to reach the places where the fires occur,” he added.

On the damage caused by the fire that occurred in two places, Mr. Kumar said he was waiting for reports from range forest officers. The reason for the fire was not known.

He said Forest Department had taken precautions to prevent the fire from spreading. He said “firelines” had been created along the roads to keep a vigil on people throwing cigarette butts and so on. Firelines were created by clearing the bushes and dry trees close to roads, Mr. Kumar said.

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