The Malaysian Fire Danger Rating System is on high alert. Under the fine fuel moisture code (FFMC) which monitors forest and vegetation fire risks, the Malaysian Meterological Department (MET) has a heat map with almost the entire peninsular Malaysia in red except north-eastern tip (Kelantan and Terengganu).
In East Malaysia, Sabah and half of Sarawak is in the danger zone while the other end of Sarawak, Kuching, is safe from potential forest fires but is facing flash floods that have displaced many families.
The FFMC is based on moisture content and other factors that, when analysed together, indicatd the probability or relative ease of fine fuels such as dry grass, slash fuels and bushes to catch fire and spread.
The MET’s latest FFMC heat map indicates that the majority of Malaysia is at the highest risk for forest fires right now, which is likely an effect of the current El Niño cycle. Fire-fighters were working hard to put out raging fires in Sarawak and Batu Caves this last week.
To prevent any man-made and unwanted raging fires, everyone should take care that they do what they can to reduce any risk; including properly putting out cigarette butts and not just tossing them anywhere, and avoid open burnings or trash or garden trimmings. In this dry heat, even small fires can quickly become uncontrollable.
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