Fire razes grassland on Quezon mountain
LUCENA CITY—An 18-hour fire razed more than 50 hectares of cogon land on Mount Masalukot in Candelaria town in Quezon province on Sunday and Monday, a week after a forest fire crept through grasslands and forests on Mount Apo in Mindanao and on Mount Kanlaon in the Visayas following the volcano’s eruption.
No one was reported hurt in the Masalukot grass fire, which was reported around 1 p.m. on Sunday and was put out about 7 a.m. of Monday.
FO3 Marx Pranada, chief of the forest fire protection division of the Bureau of Fire Protection in Quezon, said firemen from Candelaria and the neighboring towns of Sariaya and Dolores were monitoring the situation and were ready to respond should another fire break out.
The blaze started in Barangay Pinagdanlayan and part of Barangay Cabatang in Dolores town and spread to other parts of Masalukot, Pranada said.
The area is used as pasture land and investigators suspected that activities of farmers or residents there started the fire.
Salud Pangan, Department of Environment and Natural Resources park superintendent for Mounts Banahaw and San Cristobal, said the fire was far from these mountains.
“But we are not taking any chances. We’re doubling our efforts to protect Banahaw from another fire [that hit the area two years ago],” Pangan said.
Masalukot lies within the buffer zone of Banahaw and San Cristobal, both declared protected landscapes. Delfin T. Mallari Jr., Inquirer Southern Luzon
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