Malaysia –-The state Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba) has sent a request to its counterpart in Sabah to use their high performance pump to battle peat fire in Lawas.
State director Nor Hisham Mohammad said firemen needed the powerful pump in their battle to prevent the fire from spreading.
We have tried very hard to put out the fire, but every time we think the fire has died down, it reignites. The area is peat swamp. We need to put out the fire fast, he said.
Hisham said the fire was burning an area of 57ha.
The department had also sought the help of Rela and its voluntary fire-fighting unit, including the Civil Defence Department.
Hisham was worried that if the dry spell continued in Lawas, with no rain in the next two to three days, his men would have difficulty containing the fire.
Firemen are now drawing water from tube wells and water gates in the area.
We cant say when we will be able to douse the flame but we are still trying our best. The most important thing is to prevent it from spreading elsewhere. If we are able to confine the fire to the burnt area only, then we will be able to tell when we can douse the fire, he added.
He also said there were three other fires in Miri.
Two were in the areas earmarked by two companies for oil palm cultivation.
He said the department had instructed the two companies to stop the fire.
The other fire was on state land. Firemen, he said, had created temporary drainage in the area as a firebreak.