Strict no-burn zone measures to be implemented in North
The Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation is coordinating with administration officials in the North and related agencies to ensure law enforcement puts out forest fires and tackles the severe air pollution.
Department director-general Monton Sudprasert said that the data on the risk of forest fires in nine northern provinces -- Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Phrae, Phayao, Tak, Lamphun, Lampang, Nan, and Mae Hong Son -- on February 4 showed 789 spots due to the weather and the weak winds. This has led to accumulation of dust and haze in such areas.
Interior Minister General Anupong Paochinda has ordered the provincial governor to be the point man to solve the problem and called for strategic planning to provide information to all sectors and law enforcement, including the ban on burning in all areas.
Officials have requisitioned personnel and machinery such as water trucks and LUF-60 robotic fire extinguishing vehicles to support the operation of spraying water to increase moisture and reduce air pollution.
Of nine northern provinces, eight have been declared as strict burn-free areas.
1 Chiang Mai has forbidden burning from January 10 to April 30.
2 Phrae has announced a strict ban on burning from February 1 to April 30.
3 Nan province has banned burning from February 15 to April 15.
4. Phayao, Tak, Lamphun, and Lampang provinces have been declared absolute no-burning areas from March 1 to April 30.
5 Mae Hong Son is strictly forbidding fires from March 15 to April 30.
Chiang Rai is monitoring the trend of disaster situations to issue guidelines on no-burn zones later.
Some provinces have already arrested and prosecuted violators of the ban on burning.
People have been requested to refrain from burning in all forms and strictly comply with the announcements on no-burn zones to control the crisis of forest fires, smog and small-dust pollution in the area.