INDONESIA – The police have said four people had died in the past month because of forest fires in West Kalimantan.
West Kalimantan Police chief Insp. Gen. Didi Haryono said on Wednesday that four people from different regencies had died from different causes as a result of forest fires.
The two victims in Melawi regency named Vito, 7, and Rio, 11, experienced severe burns. Vito died on Aug. 12 near his house while Rio died on Aug. 16 after being transferred to Soedarso Hospital in Pontianak, the capital city of West Kalimantan.
A resident of Sambas regency, Jaidan, 56, also died from smoke inhalation on Aug. 16, while trying to put out a fire in his farm.
The latest reported victim was Ensungga, 69, a resident of Sintang regency. His charred body was found on Monday. A day before, he left the house saying he wanted to put out a fire in his farm.
Didi said the impacts of forest fire were extremely dangerous.
“In terms of health, smoke inhalation can damage children’s cerebral nerves and can cause disease,” he said.
Fire also disrupts the distribution of staple foods, he said.
Forest fires in the province are believed to be a result of slash-and-burn practices for land clearance. (sau/swd)