Fourteen provinces and a city located in the central region, the most vulnerable area to this year’s El Nino - the warm phase of a seasonal cycle of fluctuating temperatures and rainfall – have launched intensive programmes on forest fire prevention.

The susceptible localities include Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Quang Binh, Quang Tri, Thua Thien Hue and Da Nang city.

Local authorities are to boost management of cultivation activities to curb land clearing, prevent arson and strengthen coordination among relevant agencies.

The National Centre for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting recorded temperatures ranging from 35 – 38 degrees Celsius in the northwest and central regions on May 4. Notably, a high of 38.3 degrees was reported in Yen Chau district (northwest Son La province), 38.9 degrees in Tuong Duong district (Nghe An), and 38.5 degrees in Son Hoa district (Phu Yen).

Prolonged drought in central Binh Thuan province has dried out irrigation reservoirs such as Ta Mon, Song Phan and Tra Tan and lakes like Da Bac, Ca Giay and Song Khan which are the main water supply systems for local agricultural activities and daily use.

All forest-fire warnings can be found at and fire emergencies must be reported through the hotline 0986668333.-VNA