KUCHING: Some 744 acres of forests, bush and peat soil areas have been consumed by flames in Sarawak since August 1, the state Fire and Rescue Services Department said today as air quality in the state deteriorate.
The State Fire and Rescue Services Department said in a brief this morning that the number of acreage was a result of 296 cases of wildfires from August 1 until yesterday.
“By average, the State department responds to 26 cases of bush fires a day,” it said.
It also revealed that the fires had affected a house in Kampung Sangki Simunjan and completely destroyed another at Kampung Sedi, Pulau Bruit.
According to the Department of Environment’s website, there are now four air pollutant index (API) monitoring stations recording poor air quality.
As of 10am, the highest reading of 302 was recorded at the station at SK Kuala Baram 2 in Miri, followed by 294 at the Miri Industrial Training Institute, 168 in Sibu and 102 in Sri Aman.
An API reading of between zero to 50 is good, 51 to 100 is moderate, 101 to 200 is unhealthy, 201 to 300 is very unhealthy, while above 300 is considered hazardous.
Meanwhile, it appears that Sarawakians are in for another dry and stuffy week as the Malaysian Meteorological Department is not expecting rain until Thursday.
In its weekly forecast until Sunday, the department says isolated rain is expected to fall in inland areas in the afternoons from Thursday.