Satellites confirm presence of 192 hotspots on Sumatra Island

Pekanbaru, Riau (ANTARA) – The Terra and Aqua satellites detected 192 hotspots indicating forest fires across Sumatra Island on Monday morning, a significant spike, from 13 hotspots on Sunday afternoon.

Of the total 192 hotspots, 156 were found in Riau Province, nine in South Sumatra, eight in Jambi, seven in Lampung, four each in North Sumatra and Bangka Belitung, three in Riau Islands, and one in West Sumatra, Sanya Gautami, analyst at the Pekanbaru meteorology station, remarked here on Monday.

In Riau, the detected hotspots comprised 40 in Pelalawan, 29 in Siak, 21 in Rohan Hilir, 15 in Indragiri Hulu, seven each in Meranti Island and Bengkali, six in Kampar, and two each in Kuantan Singingi and Dumai.

Of the 192 hotspots, 116 were identified as fire spots, with 28 detected in Pelalawan, 22 in Siak, 19 in Indragiri Hilir, and 15 in Rohan Hilir.

Haze lowered visibility in Pekanbaru to 2.5 kilometers on Monday at 10 a.m. local time.

Personnel of the forest fire-fighting task force had made all-out efforts to put out the wildfires even on the Islamic Holiday of Idul Adha, also known as the Day of Sacrifice, falling on Sunday (Aug 11, 2019).

Meanwhile, smog emanating from forest fires hung over the provinces of Riau, West Kalimantan, and Central Kalimantan though not descending over Singapore and Malaysia, Agus Wibowo, the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) spokesman, stated.

“The haze blows toward the southeast and north. The smog cover has increased in Riau or Central Kalimantan,” Wibowo noted here on Saturday.

The air quality has worsened in Pekanbaru, Riau, and Palangkaraya, Central Kalimantan. The concentrations of particulate matter (PM10) reached 173, or considered unhealthy, in Pekanbaru, and 126, or moderate, in Palangkaraya.

Based on satellite monitoring on Saturday at 7 a.m. local time, 126 hotspots were found in Riau, four in Jambi, 13 each in South Sumatra and South Kalimantan, 533 in West Kalimantan, and 159 in Central Kalimantan.

Source: ANTARA News