Firefighters battle two-day inferno in aberdare national park

15 January 2017

published by http://www.nation.co.ke


Kenya—  Nearly 6,000 hectares of the Aberdare National Park has been destroyed by wildfire that has continued for the second day.

The fire began Friday at 10 am and has since spread, being aided by the windy weather.

Simon Gitau, acting assistant director, Mountain Conservation, said the fire has consumed the lower moorlands of the Northern Aberdare.

"We are trying to prevent the fire from getting to the main natural forest. What is burning can regenerate fast since its shrubs, heath and moorland grasses," Mr Gitau said.

More than 200 firefighters from the Kenya Forest Service, Kenya Wildlife Service and others from the ministry of Interior have been deployed to contain the inferno.

Members of the Community Forest Association (CFAs) from Embaringu, Wandare and Bellevue villages in Nyeri County are part of the team trying to put out the fire.

Mr Gitau suspects that it was caused by illegal activities in the forest.

"We suspect the fire was started by people conducting illegal activities in the forest...,” he said.