Jakarta. Indonesia’s Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency, or BMKG, said on Sunday (09/04) it has detected 15 hot spots indicating forest and land fires on the island of Sumatra.
"The hot spots were detected in four provinces," BMKG Pekanbaru head Sugarin said.
The agency's Terra and Aqua satellites detected four fire hot spots in Jambi, two each in West Sumatra and South Sumatra, and seven in Riau.
"[In Riau] there are four spots in Indragiri Hulu, two in Pelalawan and one in Kampar," Sugarin said.
Out of the seven hot spots in Riau, four are from forest fires, he added.
On a brighter note, light to medium intensity rain is still expected to fall in most parts of Riau until the end of April, before proper dry season starts in May, Sugarin said.
The fire-prone season is expected to last until September this year.
"From May to September, the wind will move from south to north. If there's fire, smoke and haze will reach Malaysia and Singapore," Sugarin said.
Riau's administration announced an emergency alert on haze from forest and land fires in January this year.
The Regional Disaster Mitigation Agency, or BPBD, said over 300 hectares of land in Riau were destroyed by fire in the first quarter of this year.
A task force established to stop forest fires has increased patrols and built canals in the province to prevent new fire hot spots.