JOHOR BAHRU: A forest fire broke out in Johor Bahru on Tuesday (Sep 17) morning, engulfing 12ha of vegetation or about the size of about 17 football fields.
Johor Fire and Rescue Department Zone 1 chief Mohamad Faizul Selamat said the blaze, which started near an industrial area in Nusajaya, was first reported at about 10.30am.
A team comprising 20 firemen from the Skudai, Pekan Nenas and Bandar Baru Kulai fire stations commenced fire fighting operations at about 11am.
The team managed to put out about 90 per cent of the fire by the evening, Mohamad Faizul said.
He told the Bernama news agency that the the fire could have started because of the hot weather, while the winds may have helped spread it.
The area is located near a highway but far from settlements, he added.
In August, dry weather in Johor Bahru also caused another forest fire which spread to 98ha.
The Johor Fire and Rescue Department said it took 24 hours to tackle the blaze in Iskandar Puteri. The large forest fire in Kampung Pekajang caused two nearby schools to close.
In Indonesia, particularly dry weather has worsened efforts to tackle toxic smoke caused by deliberate burning to clear land for plantations.
Forest fires are raging on the islands of Borneo and Sumatra, sending a choking fog across the region – including towards neighbours Malaysia and Singapore.