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North-central Vietnam’s forests engulfed in five wildfires in one day

Saturday, June 29, 2019, 13:09 GMT+7
North-central Vietnam’s forests engulfed in five wildfires in one day
A forest fire burns in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 29, 2019. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre

Five separate wildfires happened in the north-central province of Ha Tinh on Friday, destroying hundreds of hectares of forests and threatened nearby residential areas.

Up to a thousand people were mobilized to three different districts, working all day and night to tame the raging flames.

The largest and most recent wildfire began at around 1:00 pm on Friday at a protected forest area in Xuan Hong Commune, Nghi Xuan District, and quickly spread to Xuan An Town due to the sunny, dry weather and strong winds.

Firefighters and rescue forces successfully evacuated 80 households in a residential area in Xuan An, as their location is too close to the burning forests.

Authorities in Ha Tinh’s neighbor Nghe An Province also sent four fire trucks to the scene to assist the firefighting efforts.

A wildfire is seen from Xuan An Town, Nghi Xuan District in the north-central province of Ha Tinh on June 29, 2019. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre
A wildfire is seen from Xuan An Town, Nghi Xuan District in the north-central province of Ha Tinh on June 29, 2019. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre

The blaze was only put under temporary control as it struck midnight, thanks to ten-hour joint efforts by different forces, including  the local military and forest protecting units.

However, the flames flared up in the area again at 5:00 am on Saturday. As of 11:00 am the same day, local authorities and different forces were still fighting the fire, an effort made much difficult by the current outdoor temperatures of up to 40 Celsius degrees.

Nghi Xuan police told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper on Saturday they are detaining a local resident in Xuan Hong Commune suspected of causing the fire.

Firefighting force is seen at a forest fire in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 28, 2019. Photo: Ha Tinh Newspaper
Firefighting force is seen at a forest fire in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 28, 2019. Photo: Ha Tinh Newspaper
A forest fire burns in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 29, 2019. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre
A forest fire burns in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 29, 2019. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre

Besides the raging blaze in Xuan Hong, three other wildfires in Ha Tinh were recorded at planted and protected forests in Son Trung, Son Giang, and Son Le Communes of Huong Son District on Friday’s afternoon and evening.

As of Saturday morning, these fires were controlled but had yet to be put off completely, according to Thanh Nien (Young People) newspaper.

Firefighting force and local residents are seen at a forest fire in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 29, 2019. Photo: Ha Tinh Newspaper
Firefighting force and local residents cut trees to create firebreaks at a forest fire in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 29, 2019. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre

Friday was a tough day for Ha Tinh authorities as they also had to brace themselves for another fire in Can Loc District, which burned nearly three hectares of melaleuca and pine forests into ashes before it was extinguished at 4:30 am the same day.

In Nghe An, four wildfires also occurred in Anh Son, Do Luong and Quynh Luu Districts on Friday.

Likewise, more than 110 hectares of forest were destroyed in four different forest fires in the two towns of Huong Tra and Huong Thuy, the central province of Thua Thien-Hue the same day.

Functional forces cut trees to create firebreaks at a forest fire in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 29, 2019.  Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre
A forest fire is controlled in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 29, 2019. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre
Petrol pumps are removed from a filling station near a forest fire in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 29, 2019. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre
Petrol pumps are removed from a filling station near a forest fire in Ha Tinh, north-central Vietnam, June 29, 2019. Photo: Doan Hoa / Tuoi Tre

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