Kerala

Wild fire destroys 20 ha of forest in Thrissur

Forest officials had a tough time to bring the wild fire that broke out in the Athirappaly forests on Tuesday.

Forest officials had a tough time to bring the wild fire that broke out in the Athirappaly forests on Tuesday.  

It took officials over 24 hours to bring blaze under control

Forest officials and local people had a tough time controlling the fire that broke out in the Athirappilly and Vazhachal forests.

The fire that began on Monday afternoon at Athrirappilly spread to the Vazhachal forest in strong winds.

The efforts of the Forest Protection Force, Forest Department, volunteer organisations, and local people to check the fire did not succeed for almost 24 hours.

However, the fire was brought under control by 2 p.m. on Tuesday. Local people say thick smoke is still emanating from some areas.

The fire started at the Vettilappara and Pillappara forests under the Pariyaram range on Monday afternoon. It was brought under control by timely action of officials.

The fire that broke out at Kannankuzhy and Kurishumudi was difficult to control. Though more than 50 people tried hard to check the fire, it spread fast. Thick smoke and wind impeded the efforts. Fire and Rescue Services personnel found it difficult to enter the forest.

Shortage of water caused difficulties in putting out the flames. According to preliminary reports, around 20 hectares of forest was destroyed in the fire. The loss has not been calculated yet.

Forest officials said wild animals straying into human habitations following the fire was a cause for concern. Tourists had been banned in the Athirappilly region.

Mischief suspected

There are allegations that the fire was man-made. Local people and environmental activists suspect mischief behind the fire. The simultaneous fire breakout at various places in the forest was a pointer.

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Printable version | Jun 5, 2020 7:03:37 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/wild-fire-destroys-20-ha-of-forest-in-thrissur/article23229835.ece

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