Saturday, April 10, 2010

Alarm Bells Rings on Small Bushfire at Margallas

Though not much devastating but the small bushfire that broke out behind the Lohey Dandi top on Friday afternoon sounded the alarm bells for those entrusted with the task to continuously monitor Margalla Hills, take effective preventive measures and to react quickly to control and put out if any such fire may hit the area during the ongoing summer season. 

Capital Development Authority (CDA) Environment Wing Deputy Director-General Malik Aulia Khan told ‘The News’ that a ‘small fire’ broke out at the Military Farm No. 9 behind the Lohey Dandi top which did not cause any significant damage. 

“The area where fire broke out is along the trail leading from Lohey Dandi towards Pir Sohawa and is frequented by trekkers, the local people as well as the devotees who visit the shrine of Hazrat Barri Imam. The fire was immediately reported to the closest picket of the CDA Environment Directorate set up on the Margallas for monitoring the situation and a squad was quickly rushed to the spot. They swiftly put out the fire and secured the area. 

The small patch, measuring not more than two kanals, was affected by the fire and grasses and shrubbery was the only green cover on this patch,” the CDA DDG (Environment) told ‘The News’. He said that the fire broke out at around 2:45 p.m. and it was brought under control and put out completely by 3:15 p.m. “Evidently, it is an accidental fire, which broke out only because of negligence on part of someone who might have thrown away a smoldering cigarette butt or a still lighted matchstick. There were no signs of any foul play from the affected area. However, we are aware that because of the long dry spell during the winter in which very few rains were received in the region, the chances of fire incidents on Margalla Hills are much higher because the dried up shrubbery and grasses are highly vulnerable,” he added. 

He said that the Environment Wing of the CDA has already placed the best possible measures to prevent the fire incidents on the Margallas. According to him, the CDA staff was fully prepared to put out any fire if any such incident occurred during this summer. He once again repeated the appeal CDA Chairman Imtiaz Inayat Elahi has been making to the residents of Islamabad, especially those living in small villages and settlements dotting the Margallas on both sides to extend maximum cooperation to the CDA and help prevent any such fire incident on the Margallas. 

He urged people to strictly refrain from smoking while walking through the treks and trails on the Margallas, strictly avoid lighting fires and immediately report if they see smoke rising from any part of the Margalla Hills to the concerned offices.

No comments:

Post a Comment