Mt Apo forest fires affects N. Cotabato, Davao del Sur and Talomo Mt Range

Mt Apo forest fires affects N. Cotabato, Davao del Sur and Talomo Mt Range

DAVAO CITY, Philippines — The forest fire continues to affect large areas of Mt. Apo as government and other stakeholders pooled resources to prevent further spread towards Talomo mountain range in Davao City and Davao del Sur areas.

The affected area is now estimated at 300 hectares.

Maj. Ezra Balagtey, officer-in-charge of the Eastern Mindanao Command Public Information Office, said a large portion of the fire is within North Cotabato, although a fireline has already been established as a means to control the spread of the fire.

Balagtey said the assessment also showed large portion of the fire is now within Talomo Mt. Range and Davao del Sur.

The damage assessment was conducted on Monday after the Tactical Operations Group (TOG) 11 together with personnel from Davao del Sur Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (PDRMMC) took an aerial view of Mt. Apo.

Another reconnaissance for possible conduct of heli bucket was conducted using the Huey rescue helicopter from central command in Cebu City.

Last night, a joint PDRRMC meeting of North Cotabato and Davao Del Sur was held at the Incident Command Post of PDRRMC-North Cotabato in Lake Agco, Illumavis, Kidapawan City, North Cotabato. They have yet to determine the cause of fire.

Agencies have planned out to contain the fire, while other stakeholders such as mountaineering groups and IP communities.

The fire in Mt. Apo started Saturday afternoon at the peak and spread downhill towards the Kapatagan area in Davao del Sur. PNA/