Control posts to detect bushfires

Lee (right, front row) observing an NREB officer preparing to operate a drone.

MIRI: Three control posts have been set up by the Miri Division Disaster Management Committee (DDMC) to detect early bushfires within peat soil areas covering Kuala Baram, Senadin, Tudan and Permyjaya.

Transport Minister Datuk Lee Kim Shin, who is also minister-in-charge of the Miri DDMC, said the control posts, which are manned by People’s Volunteer Corps personnel, have been operational since April 23 this year.

“Two of them are located in Kuala Baram, while the other one nearby Curtin University Malaysia in Senadin,” he said when met after conducting a brief visit to the three control posts on Monday (May 3).

He said this year, strategic planning in the prevention of recurrent bushfires within peat soil areas, especially in Kuala Baram, Senadin and Tudan, covering about 8,000 hectares, have been rolled out.

Lee (third right) and officers from various relevant agencies at a control post in Kuala Baram.

“We have learned from past experience in battling bushfires, and this year, we are combining technology and a conventional method to create a more effective and efficient fire management,” he said.

This year, the Natural Resources and Environmental Board (NREB) Sarawak Miri branch is deploying drones to help monitor fire-prone areas as the division is entering the dry and hot season.

Lee also urged the public not to engage in open-burning activities.

“The haze resulting from open burning can affect us badly in terms of health, especially in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic,” he added.