Forest Fire Still Raging in Tublay, Benguet, Mountain Province (Luzon)


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A massive fire in the mountains of Cordillera has burnt 20 hectares of forest and is now still raging in Tublay, Benguet in Luzon, Philippines. Most of these are pine trees being destroyed since Wednesday, according to reports from major news sources. Residents and authorities have been alarmed since the fire has caused power interruptions in the area.

Up to now there has been no official report on how many residents are being affected since rescuers and firefighters are struggling to reach the inner forest, causing the fire to spread more freely. Meanwhile, a report from Fire Officer 2 Arnold Coy-on of Bureau of Fire Protection of Tublay claiming that a new fire has been spotted yesterday, Friday. 

It was also reported that at least 150 hectares of trees has been destroyed by fire in Kabayan, Benguet after nine days of blaze. Thankfully, there was no reported casualty when it was stopped last Tuesday after more than a week of rage. People were also relieved to learn that Mt. Pulok has not been reached by fire. Meanwhile, there are no reports yet if the Benguet Electric Cooperative Inc. has already turned its power on. 

However, authorities and villagers in Sitio Nalseb, Ambasador is still currently fighting the fire and is now on its third day of trekking hours and hours to suppress the blazing inferno. Volunteers and fire fighters find it difficult and mostly have to combat the raging fire manually since the place cannot be easily reached by fire trucks. 

Authorities suspect that the fire in Sitio Nalseb may have been triggered by “slash and burn” (kaingin) activities or caused by some random person throwing a lit cigarette. Because of this, residents of the area have been alerted by Community Environment and Natural Resources Office Baguio City’s Leandro de Jesus to be vigilant and to avoid the kaingin practice since this is usually the main reason for forest fire in the region. 

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Alter Picar

Alter Picar is a writer, translator, self-published author, songwriter / musician, community worker, non-profit organization manager (volunteer), mental health advocate / educator, librarian, and organic gardener.