Officials and residents in Barangay San Rafael, Puerto Princesa City, are on high alert following a grassfire that erupted at approximately 12:45 p.m. on April 17.

The fire has swept through around 60 hectares of cogon grass and hillsides, posing a challenge to local firefighting efforts.

Barangay Captain Ronald Macola said the grassfire started in Sitio Dakuton and has crossed several private properties. Fortunately, there has been no damage to structures, and no injuries have been reported.

As of now, the origins of the grassfire remain unknown.

Although the fire briefly subsided around 9 p.m. last night, Macola told Palawan News it has reignited, causing renewed concern among them.

Local officials are continuously monitoring the situation and are coordinating efforts to control the fire and prevent further outbreaks.

“Nagsimula bandang 12:45 ng tanghali, kagabi mga alas nueve na nahinto konti. Pero ngayon bumabalik na naman, nandoon ang mga tanod namin, para mag-bantay at mapatay ang mga bagong apoy na sisiga,” said Macola.

“Walang mga pananim, puro kugonan ito at  mga kahoy lang sa bundok, bulubundukin ito at malayo sa mga residente,” he stated.

Grassfires have been repeatedly erupting, leading to ongoing vigilance by the authorities, explained Macola.

In response to the recurring incidents, a firetruck from Astoria Palawan Resort and personnel from the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) are stationed on alert throughout the night. They are joined by forest rangers and other municipal agencies, with local residents also actively participating in the efforts.

Macola also reported a recent blaze in the Riverside area of San Rafael. This fire traversed several private properties and scorched various crops, adding to the problems they face.

“Mga private property ang nadaanan ng sunog, maramjng mga tanim na nadamay katulad ng mga kasoy,” he said.

There was also a reported fire in the cemetery of Tanabag, a neighboring barangay of San Rafael, which occurred at noon on April 17.

Grassfires, also known as wildfires in grassland areas, can erupt due to a variety of reasons, often related to climatic conditions, human activities, and environmental factors.

A video recorded by a local passerby captures the areas impacted by the grassfire in San Rafael on Wednesday.

She mentioned that it was the first time she had ever seen such a grassfire, and, thankfully, there were no injuries or property damage.

“Simula sa mga barangay ng Concepcion, meron. Sa Langogan din meron g nasusunog sa mataas na part. Baka nagkaka-ingin kaya ganoon,” the source said.