Forest fire breaks out in NE China

Forest fire breaks out in NE China   

12 October 2011

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China — A forest fire that broke out Tuesday evening in Northeast China’s Heilongjiang province has engulfed an area of 96 hectares so far, according to the provincial forest fire prevention headquarters.

The fire broke out around 7:06 pm on the Shilihe Forest Farm under the jurisdiction of the Hegang Municipal Forestry Bureau.

The blaze was extinguished Tuesday night but reignited at 10:12 am Wednesday due to strong winds.

A total of 2,185 personnel, as well as a helicopter and three planes, have been dispatched to the area to put out the fire.

The fire was the third wildfire to hit Heilongjiang in recent days. Last Saturday night, firefighters put out a forest fire that raged for a full day in the city of Heihe. On Sunday, a grassland fire in the city of Yichun forced the evacuation of 465 local residents.

The frequent occurrence of wildfires prompted national forest fire prevention authorities to issue an orange alert on Sunday in the Inner Mongolia autonomous region and Heilongjiang.

Orange is the second-highest alert level in China’s forest fire prevention system.

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