Jakarta (Antara) – A fire destroyed 343 hectares of forest area, home to the edelweiss flower, in Mount Ciremai Kuningan District, West Java Province.
"The area gutted is some 343 hectares," Agus Mauludin, acting head of the Kuningan Disaster Mitigation Office (BPBD), said here on Tuesday.
The area is located at an altitude between 2,600 and 3,078 MDPL. The fire was spotted for the first time at Gua Walet (Swallow Cave) block on August 7, 2019, at 1 p.m. local time. On August 13, the fire was completely put out, he added.
The forest fire fighting team carried out mop-up activities from 6 a.m. until 3 p.m. every day for several days to make sure there was no more fire or smoke on Mount Ciremai, he noted.
In addition to Mount Ciremai in West Java, Mount Sumbing in Wonosobo District, Central Java and Mount Arjono in Batu Municipality, and East Java Province were also on fire.
A joint team conducted a thorough search of Mount Sumbing in Wonosobo District, Central Java Province, to ensure that a fire raging in the mountains forest area on Sunday afternoon (August 11) was completely extinguished.
"Some 100 personnel comprising officers of the Wonosobo Disaster Mitigation Office (BPBD), the North Kedu Forestry Office, Wonosobo police and military officers, as well as volunteers have been combing the area since Monday morning," Agus Wibowo, acting spokesman of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB), stated in Jakarta on Monday (August 12).
A wildfire razed a protected forest area in Banyumudal Village, Sapuran Sub-district, in the Mount Sumbing area on Sunday afternoon. The fire was later put out. On Monday morning, however, smoke was spotted again near the area.
Indonesia has been experiencing a severe dry season that has triggered forest fires on the islands of Sumatra, Kalimantan, and Java.
Last year, the prolonged dry season had triggered wildfires in forest areas located on the slopes of several mountains in the provinces of Central, East, and West Java.
Mount Merbabu, Mount Sumbing, Mount Slamet, and Mount Sindoro in Central Java Province; Mount Argopuro and Mount Sadran in East Java Province; Mount Ciremai in West Java Province; and Mount Lawu located on the border of the provinces of Central and East Java.