Bomba records 1,319 cases of open burning


SIBU: State Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba) recorded 1,319 cases of open burning thus far this year, with February and March registering the most number of calls in the last five years.

According to its state director Nor Hisham Mohammad yesterday, the situation at this moment is worrying because of the fast approaching festive season coupled with the dry weather.

He, however, was quick to point out that the situation was even more worrying in the peninsula.

Nor Hisham said they would be utilising the air unit to carry out surveillance.

From the 1,319 open burning cases reported, bush fires formed the bulk at 980, followed by forest fires (147); refuse fires (136) and orchard fires (56).

“The highest number of open burning cases for the first seven months of this year was recorded in March at 354. This is followed by Feb with 315 cases, July (280) and June (148). January had the lowest number of cases at 43, April (87) and May (92).

“The sudden spike (for this month) was recorded since July 18 till yesterday (Thursday),” Nor Hisham told The Borneo Post.

He was asked on the total number of open burning cases until July this year and if the prolonged dry weather would spike the number of cases of bush fires in the state. He attributed the major causes of open burning to the human factor as well as the dry season in February and March.

On why the higher number of cases this month, he attributed this to El-Nino apart from the wind pattern last week.

He further noted wind rotation and moisture (cloud) was extracted in north China Sea and as a result, Taiwan was struck by typhoon last week.

“This process allowed cumulonimbus clouds to form over Sarawak, where we received rain in most areas here in the last four days,” he pointed out.

Asked on the bush fire in Miri area, he said it was contained during the last two days through concerted efforts, where the area covered five acres.