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Jakarta Post

South Sumatra disaster agency lacks real-time monitoring of forest fires

  • Yulia Savitri

    The Jakarta Post

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Palembang, South Sumatra   /   Tue, August 6, 2019   /  06:40 pm
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A toll road workers directs traffic amid thick haze from forest and land fires in Pulau Semembu village, Ogan Ilir regency in South Sumatra on Monday.(JP/Ahmad Rizki Prabu)

South Sumatra Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD) still does not have a real-time monitoring system to help tackle forest and land fires despite the declaration of emergency status by the governor in March, a top official has said. The agency head Iriansyah said it still heavily relied for information on hot spots in the region on satellite monitoring provided by the National Institute of Aeronautics and Space (Lapan) However, the Lapan Fire application provides information on hotspots only four to 24 hours after the event, which hampers swift firefighting efforts. “Lapan’s non-real time reports are a challenge,” Iriansyah said at his office on Monday, adding that the agency also counted on land patrols in dealing with fires. Some 1,500 personnel were deployed to patrol 90 subdistricts vulnerable to forest and land fires. However, often the patrols encounter p...