Firefighters battle 240 bush, wild-land fires

[5/18/2020 1:29:16 PM]

AMMONNEWS - Firefighters battle around 240 bush and wild-land fires that engulfed an area of 5,000 donums across the Kingdom in the past 24 hours, according to a statement by the Civil Defense Department (CDD).

The majority of those fires broke out as a result of an intense heat wave that pushed daytime mercury levels well above seasonal average by almost 10 degrees Celsius in the highlands. Aqaba and the Jordan Valley have been baking in scorching heat over the past three days after temperature broke the 45C threshold.

However, the CDD statement said many of those fires were man-made and could have been avoided should people depart from some behaviors, such as discarding lighted cigarettes in open and bush-dense areas.

Furthermore, the CDD urged people not to start fires in vegetation regions for any reason even if they wanted to clear their gardens and farms from bush. There were no reports of casualties resulting from the flames which were mainly recorded in the central and northern regions.

The current heat wave is the first after an exceptionally wet season the Kingdom has not seen in decades with rainfall breaking into April.

The CDD called for an active public-private partnership to encourage volunteers to remove dry brush and bush from areas susceptible to recurring fires.

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