Sarawak monitors seas for red tides


  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 25 Feb 2004

BY STEPHEN THEN

MIRI: The state environment and fisheries authorities are monitoring the seas off northern Sarawak for possible appearance of the “red-tide” phenomenon following reports that waters in the southern parts of Brunei have been affected by the toxic algae. 

Local fishermen are also on the alert and fishing vessels have been told to contact the authorities if they come across any signs of contamination in Sarawak waters. 

Sarawak Natural Resources and Environment Board assistant controller and chief enforcement officer Dania Goyog said the board was aware of the possible threat posed by the algae.  

(Red tide is a term use to describe contamination of the sea by a type of microscopic planktonic algae.  

Those consuming sea creatures tainted by the algae will suffer serious food poisoning.) 

Goyog said yesterday the board had placed surveillance helicopters on standby in Kuching for dispatch here when needed, adding that it had the facilities to conduct aerial surveillance far off the coast to detect the locations of red tides. 

“Aerial surveillance will be much more effective than using boats. Our helicopters can cover a wider section of the South China Sea and at a faster pace. 

“We will be able to get a bird’s eye view of how serious the situation may be,” he said. 

He added that the board had yet to receive an official request from the Fisheries Department for aerial surveillance assistance. 

The Fisheries Department is still using boats for surveillance off the coast of Kuala Baram near to the border with Brunei, some 35km north of here. 

Its Miri chief Phang Nukeng said the department had been conducting regular boat surveillance off the coast here over the past few days but had yet to come across any areas affected by red tides. 

“We have collected samples of water off the coast for testing. In the meantime, those who consume fish harvested off the coast here should remove the gills and innards. The fishes should be cooked very thoroughly,” he said. 

He said the coastal belt in northern Sarawak had never been affected by the red tide problem while Labuan and Sabah had experienced it before. 

The Brunei Department of Fisheries has issued a warning in the Bruneian newspapers stating that the phenomenon had affected waters off Belait district. 

It warned the public against catching fish or shellfish off the coast of Muara, Belait and Brunei Bay up to Pulau Berambang.  

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 1
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
   

Next In Nation

Police looking for Indian workers seen being abducted in viral video
MCO: 73 arrested for various SOP violations on Monday (April 12)
Ramadan bazaar near Ipoh's Perak Stadium draws large crowd on first day
DAP infighting exposes chauvinism among grassroots despite its multiracial claims, says MCA
Flash floods cause traffic jams in parts of KL
Ismail Sabri: EMCO for four areas in Sabah and Pahang from April 14-27
Pulapol cluster accounts for 10% of Sarawak's record high 607 Covid-19 cases
Covid-19: SMK Agama Kota Kinabalu ordered to close for two weeks from April 13-26
Health Ministry: Nine new Covid-19 clusters, four from workplaces
Covid-19: Zii Jia misses out on vaccination due to illness - Hendrawan

Stories You'll Enjoy


Vouchers