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Mt. Apo fire in Davao del Sur contained

The fire in Mt. Apo that has been destroying forests in Davao del Sur has already been contained as of Wednesday noon, a provincial official said.

In a phone interview with Connie Sison in Balitanghali, Harry Camoro, executive director of Davao Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC), said that the fire eating up more than 300 hectares of the forest was contained by forest rangers with the help of locals.

"As of the moment, na-contain po natin ang apoy. Ngayon ang tinitira natin 'yung apoy na nasa puno na natumba," Camoro said.

The Philippine Air Force is currently conducting an operation to put out the fire that has been raging since Saturday afternoon, he said.

Forest rangers made up of Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) members and rescuers from Regions 11 and 12 were on the site as well.

Nearby residents helped with the operation, aiding the rangers with the logistics.

Camoro said that they cannot state yet the cause of the fire because their immediate objective is to put out the flames.

"'Pag ma-declare na ng bureau na fire out na 'yung incident, then we'll conduct our joint investigation dun sa incident," he said.

According to reports, a group of trekkers who used the trails in Sta. Cruz town could have started the blaze after they created a small fire near their camp in Lake Venado.

Camoro added that he personally supported the idea to close Mt. Apo, the Philippines' highest mountain, from commercial treks.

"Personally, I'm a mountaineer but I do suggest, siguro after this investigation I'll be writing a letter...pwede pong forever nang isara itong bundok na ito," Camoro said.

"Dahil siguro sa pinaggagawa natin sa taas, nag-create ng effect," he added. Jessica Bartolome/KG, GMA News


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