DENR mulls closure of Mt. Apo campsites | Inquirer News

DENR mulls closure of Mt. Apo campsites

/ 05:43 AM March 31, 2016

Environment Secretary Ramon Paje Jr. wants campsites in Mt. Apo closed following reports that mountaineers caused the raging forest fire that broke out in the country’s highest mountain on Saturday.

Paje said he told the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) regional director in Davao, Joselin Fragada to ask local officials to “temporarily” close Mt. Apo to campers after the fire has been contained.

News reports have quoted bikers and trekkers who were at Mt. Apo when the fire broke out last Saturday afternoon as saying three unidentified mountaineers appeared to be responsible for the fire.


The three mountaineers reportedly camped at the peak of the mountain and left without making sure their campfire had been put out.


Paje said barring campers on the mountain will “prevent a repeat of the fire incident.”

The DENR chief also pointed out that the risk of forest fires had increased due to the long dry spell and high temperatures.

At least 40 DENR personnel based in Digos City have been providing “technical” support to firefighters battling the rapidly spreading fire, according to Paje.

The DENR regional office in Davao City has also provided equipment to the seven firefighting teams created by local government units, Bureau of Fire Protection and the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council.

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TAGS: DENR, mountaineers, Mt. Apo

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