Firefighters race on extinguishing flames to save slow-moving turtle in Chiang Mai

Firefighters working on extinguishing flames in Chiang Mai’s Si Lanna National Park on Thursday managed to get to a turtle in time.

Park officials along with local villagers and volunteers spent all Thursday morning putting up fire breaks to contain the fire that broke out inside the park, which covers 260,800 acres of mountainous area in Phrao, Mae Taeng, and Chiang Dao districts.

“We saw wildlife running away from the flames, including this turtle that was trying to escape the fire that was consuming its home,” the national park chief, Phuphichit Chuaybamrung, said.

The Natural Resources and Environment Ministry on Thursday dispatched three helicopters to pick up water from Mae Ngat Somboon Chon Dam in Mae Taeng district to help put out the fire. It took more than 10 flights before the fire was put out.

As of Thursday Chiang Mai reported 48 hot spots caused by forest fires, of which 37 were in protected forest land and nine in conserved forests.

“Please stop setting fire to wooded areas to hunt wild animals because it can cause forest fires and worsen pollution,” Phupichit said.