Coordination Meeting between Various Agencies to Tackle Forest and Grass Fires During Drought Season

A coordination meeting involving various agencies to tackle Forest and Grass Fires were held as part of the stakeholders' preparation in facing the drought and dry season. The meeting at the National Disaster Management Centre, NDMC among other things discussed logistics, personnel and joint actions preparations to overcome the dry season as well as efforts to raise the public's awareness on the impacts of dry weather. It was chaired by Awang Mohd. Amir Hairil bin Haji Mahmud, Permanent Secretary for Safety, Welfare and Laws at the Ministry of Home Affairs. The meeting also coincided with a briefing delivered by the Meteorological Department and the Fire and Rescue Department.

According to the Meteorological Department, Brunei Darussalam is currently in the Northeast Monsoon season which will normally last until March. March is known to be the driest month as compared to the other months, with the lowest amount of recorded rainfall. The dry period during the day is due to the decrease in rainfall activity and increase in air temperature exceeding 34 degree Celsius which can increase the risks of forest or grass fires. Based on the statistics by the Fire and Rescue Department, 370 forest and grass fires calls were received on January and February this year. The fires have affected 375 hectares of forest in all districts. The meeting was attended by representatives from stakeholder agencies.

Meanwhile, general forecasts for the country up to this weekend are generally cloudy. Rain or thundershowers may occur in some coastal areas in the morning and in the interior of the country at night. Heavy rainfall can increase the risk of flash floods especially in low-lying areas. Several areas experienced flash floods during heavy rains yesterday afternoon.

Source: Radio Television Brunei