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Forest Fire, Haze Situation in North Remains Despite Recent Rains

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CHIANG RAI – Despite rains in many northern and northeastern areas, the forest fire and haze situation has remained unsolved, such as the fire at the rubbish dump in Chiang Rai’s Chiang Khong district, as efforts continued to douse a three-day-old blaze.

A source at the scene told The Nation that they estimated it would take at least another day or two before the flames are finally put out.

Fire fighters have been waging a difficult battle as flames leap from the dump’s five pits. Strong winds are directing the blaze towards the fire-fighters, who have donned fireproof overalls and air tanks as carbon monoxide levels soar.

By Tuesday evening, they had managed to extinguish the fire at the first and second pits, while water was being pumped from Mekong River to douse the flames in other pits, the source said.

Meanwhile, a forest fire at Nam Lee Tai village in Na Muen district of Nan province where the 32nd Rangers Task Force has put it out, set up fire barriers and stayed on alert.

A combined force of personnel in Khun Satharn national park has put out the forest fires on about one rai of land in Nam Lee Tai village, about 20 rai of land in Nakha village and some land in Huay Phee Luang village and set up one-kilometer-long fire barriers.

In Ubon Ratchathani province, mists of water has been sprayed to contain PM 2.5 airborne particulate matter which has risen above normal level to 79 micrograms per cubic meter on Thung Sri Muang ground in Ubon Ratchathani City Municipality.

In Uthai Thani province, a combined force of personnel has put out forest fires, haze and airborne dust in Larn Sak and Baan Rai districts where sugarcanes had been burned down.

The Department of Pollution Control is putting forward a national agenda on airborne particulate matter caused by the haze situation in the North with the help from the National Environment Committee and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment acting as major forces behind the agenda. Measures will be taken toward the increased efficiency in the administration and management of the affected areas, the prevention and reduction in the origins of pollution and the increased efficiency in the administration and management of pollution.