The Forest Ranger Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has urged local authorities in the central, Central Highlands and southern regions to take measures to prevent forest fires.

They warned of the risk of serious blazes across 14 provinces nationwide including An Giang, Binh Phuoc, Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Binh Thuan, Ca Mau, Dak Lak, Dong Nai, Dong Thap, Gia Lai, Khanh Hoa, Kon Tum, Long An, Ninh Thuan and Tay Ninh – all of which are experiencing prolonged drought.

Specific warnings have also been put out over 10,000 hectares of forest in the southern Kien Giang province, stretching across Phu Quoc National Park, Giang Thanh, Hon Dat and U Minh Thuong.

Since the outset of the current dry season, Kien Giang province has suffered 16 forest fires, damaging nearly 93 hectares of forest.

To deal with the risks of fire, the province has implemented a number of precautionary programmes including around-the-clock patrols and logistics planning.-VNA