Bush Fires Contribute To Unhealthy API Reading; KK worse hit

A bush fire raging at the hillslope behind the UUC apartments in telipok

KOTA KINABALU: Air pollutant levels in Sabah’s state capital have hit the unhealthy mark as bush fires were reported around the city in the current dry spell.

As at 1pm Saturday (March 16), the Air Pollutant Index (API) reading for

Kota Kinabalu was at 143 while the readings for the south-western Papar and Beaufort areas were at 118.

The Department of Environment (DoE) website did not indicate any hotspots within the region that could have triggered the haze while local meteorologists said that it was likely due to localised fires around the city’s west coast areas.

“There are an increased number of bush fires we are attending to,” he said, urging people to exercise caution in carrying out open burning activities.

Unsupervised open burning activities or indiscriminate throwing of lit cigarettes have been blamed for triggering several bush fires in the state capital and neighbouring district.

Earlier this week, two vehicles parked in an open space in the Putatan area near here were razed after the dry grass in the area caught fire. The blaze is believed to have been sparked by an indiscriminately disposed lit cigarette butt.