Rainfall in Sumatra douses hotspots

  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 04 Sep 2013

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia is expected to be haze-free over the next one week, thanks to frequent rains that continue to douse haze-causing fires in central Sumatra, Indonesia.

Meteorological Department central forecasting office director Muhammad Helmi Abdullah said that as of Monday, no hotspots had been detected in both peninsular Malaysia and Indonesia.

This was despite a report last week indicating an increase in hotspots in Sumatra, with the latest number being 488, of which 267 were in the Riau province and 66 in south Sumatra.

“So far, no hotspots have been detected.

“The main factor for this is because of the frequent rainfall,” he said.

However, he said the department could not retrieve data from other suspected hotspots due to thick cloud cover.

“There could be hotspots somewhere else but the thick clouds have blocked our satellite view,” he said.

Helmi also said that wind had helped to ensure that haze particles were not blown to Malaysia.

“The wind that is blowing these haze particles is moving very slowly at 10kph to 20kph,” he said.

He also expected that wind from different directions would occur in peninsular Malaysia, towards northwest and south Malaysia.

“Based on current conditions, we can say that the haze will not be making its way here for the next seven days,” he said.

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