Hundreds of firefighters and civilians are battling a large wildfire on Mt Kilimanjaro as of Monday, October 12. According to the Tanzania National Parks Service (TANAPA), the blaze reportedly began on the southeastern slopes of the mountain on Sunday and has been rapidly spreading since. In addition to approximately 80 firefighters deployed, hundreds of civilians, primarily students from the College of African Wildlife Management Mweka in nearby Kibosho Magharibi have been assisting in efforts to extinguish the fire. No evacuations or casualties have been reported although authorities remain concerned that there may be a potential disruption to the local water supply as residents in communities at the base of Kilimanjaro are dependent on water from the mountain.
Further spread of the fire is possible in the near term. An emergency response presence and localized transportation disruptions, namely road closures, should be anticipated in the affected areas.
Those in the vicinity of the fire are advised to monitor the situation, avoid the area, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities, including evacuation orders.
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