Nov : Hill Fire


What is causing the fires?

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There is generally a higher incidence of hill fires on weekends and public holidays when the public

flock to the countryside, as opposed to weekdays.  The dry weather in autumn and winter is especially

prone to hill fires.  Fires can spread rapidly in strong winds and on steep grass slopes, posing a

great threat to life and property.  Make a quick escape in the event of a hill fire.  Even if the fire scene

is far ahead, you should back off and leave immediately instead of putting yourself in harm’s way

by continuing with the journey.


Fire Danger Warning

Fire danger warnings issued by the Hong Kong Observatory are based on weather conditions

favouring the occurrence and spread of fires (such as low humidity and high wind speed), and on

information on the dryness of vegetation supplied by the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation

Department.  There are two levels of warning: Yellow and Red.  The Yellow Fire Danger Warning

will be issued when the fire risk is high whereas the Red Fire Danger Warning will be issued when

the fire risk is extreme.  When engaging in mountain activities, care must be taken to prevent hill fires.






Frequent hillfire on Double Ninth Festival


Source: The Standard 25 Oct, 2020


Multiple reports of hillfires were made as today is the tomb sweeping day.

As of 2:00pm, the Fire Services Department has received nearly 40 hillfire reports, in areas such as

Yuen Long, Tuen Mun, Sheung Shui, Sha Tau Kok, Tai Po and Ma On Shan. It is suspected that grave

sweepers may have left their burning incense unattended or did not put out kindling before leaving.

At around 1:00pm, the police received calls that the hillside near Sai O Village at Sai Sha Road was

on fire. Firefighters arrived later and put out the fire in 50 minutes. No evacuation was made.

Yellow fire danger warning is now in force, meaning that the fire risk is high.




300 rush to save animals as fire bears down on shelter


Source: The Standard 27 Oct, 2020


Nearly 300 people heeded an online call for volunteers and rushed to rescue around 180 cats and

dogs in a Pat Heung animal shelter that was on the verge of being engulfed by a hill fire overnight.

During the evacuation some of the animals suffered from incontinence and vomiting due to the dense


The fire, which first broke out on Saturday afternoon at the Kai Kung Leng mountain range in Lam

Tsuen Country Park in the Pat Heung area of Yuen Long, spread to another mountain range some

100 meters from the 3,000-square-foot shelter in Tai Kong Po on Sunday night.




It was among 104 hill fires reported to the Fire Services Department from Sunday to 5pm yesterday

amid a yellow fire danger warning. Hill fires also erupted in Tuen Mun, Mai Po, Tai Po, Ma On Shan

and Sha Tau Kok, but was later put out by firemen.

The Pat Heung fire had been largely put out by 8.51am yesterday after over 40 hours.

Some 300 volunteers arrived at the Big Tree Animal Sanctuary and Adoption Center following a

Facebook post about the fire past midnight yesterday.

Firemen with water jets were called to the scene after residents of Tai Kong Po reported a blaze on

the mountain range 500 meters away from the residential area at around 11pm on Sunday.



One volunteer was seen driving a 5.5-tonne truck to assist in the evacuation of around 150 dogs and

30 cats.

They first took the cats away in kennels to the house of a volunteer in Tai Tong near Tai Kong Po.

Some of the dogs were taken to the warehouse of a pet store 300 meters away from the animal


At 4am yesterday, all the cats had been evacuated and the remaining 40 dogs were able to stay in the

shelter. By 6am, all the animals had been returned to the shelter.

A volunteer nicknamed Jojo said that there were only four volunteers inside the shelter as the fire


「Since there were not enough kennels inside the shelter, the cats and dogs could not be evacuated

quickly,」 she said.

She said that this was a first for the animals in the shelter, which has been operating for 20 years.

「The fire was really aggressive and we were helpless and I was worried no one would come to our

rescue [despite the online call],」 she said.

「But it turned out that a lot of people came to help us I was really moved by the gesture.

「Hongkongers are amazing.」

Another volunteer, Cheng, who lives in Sheung Shui, said he first learned about the call for

assistance from social media and drove to the shelter with other volunteers.

Meanwhile, a Yuen Long resident who returned home from Europe found the roof of his village

house covered in black ash from the fires.

「I went to the roof to breathe some fresh mountain air after three long, challenging and exhausting

flights home and a night in quarantine,」 he said.

「But I only found piles of filthy ash swirling around.」