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China issues forest fire alert in five regions

(Xinhua)

08:58, September 27, 2011

BEIJING, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- Chinese authorities on Monday issued an orange alert for forest fire outbreaks in five regions in the country's south and southwest.

There will be high risks for forest fires in the provinces of Hunan, Guangdong and Guizhou, Chongqing Municipality and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region in the next three days, said the national forest fire prevention headquarters under the State Forestry Administration in a statement.

It attributed the risks to high temperatures and scarce rains.

South and southwest China have seen hotter weather since the beginning of this month compared to the same period in previous years, said the statement.

Meanwhile, drought has lingered in most of those areas, with precipitation levels at about half the historic averages, according to the statement.

The headquarters urged stricter control over sources of ignition in forests and better emergency response plans.

Following the red alert, the orange alert is the second highest alert in China's forest fire prevention system.

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