The Times of Tanzania
Eastern Africa News Network, Breaking News Tanzania

Mount Kilimanjaro Fire: Army Enters into Action

As raging fires continue to wreak havoc on Kilimanjaro, Members of the Tanzania People’s Defence Forces are descending onto the Mountain for reinforced action against the outbreak.

Army officers and soldiers from the TPDF battalions are jetting in full swing in Moshi ready to take onto the special operation.

They are responding to the directive issued by the Chief of Defence Forces, General Jacob John Mkunda, that the army should step in to assist in battling the flames on the mountain.

The Tanzania People’s Defence Force teams are being dispatched to the Siha and Mweka bases of Kilimanjaro, to assist in the task of quelling the fires that have been blazing for nearly two weeks now.

The dispatch from TPDF

Also, an official statement from the Acting TPDF Director of Information, Lieutenant Colonel Gaudentius Gervas Ilonda, says the army teams will work in cooperation with other security forces as well as local residents to tackle the wildfires.

This is the second fire outbreak on Kilimanjaro within a fortnight. Current spell of hot weather is suspected.

The Tanzania Times was the first to report the first fire scenario was reported on October 21, 2022.

The initial outbreak was almost put off five days later.

But within two days another disaster, a bigger one at that, was reported again by mountain climbers.

The fire is razing parts of the mountain that happen to be popular base camps for hikers and climbers.

All the Kings’ Men and horses

So far more than 500 people, including firefighters, the Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) staff, the police as well as students from wildlife colleges, tour operators and villagers have joined hands in the battles against mountain fire.

Reports from Kilimanjaro indicate that, the firefighting task is being made difficult since the flames are fanned by strong winds.

Authorities, assure that the fire has not caused any casualties in the area.

Thousands of people climb Mount Kilimanjaro every year.

These two fires incidents occur exactly two years after another disaster which destroyed 95 square kilometres of vegetation on the mountain after burning for over a week in October 2020.

Experts advise that it is high time Tanzania invested in special planes to fight such fires.

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