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   Until 1971, there were no any records kept of forest fire occurrence in Thailand. However, there were some observation made by forest officers and expert concerning forest fire damages in Thailand. For instance, Champion (1962) mentioned that uncontrolled burning is universal in the deciduous and pine forest. Dusit (1968) noted that forest fire is the second most destructive human activity in causing damage to natural stand and impoverishing forest soil. Thiem (1969) studied soil and water losses from burned and unburned areas from 1960 to 1968 and reported that burning would greatly increase soil and water losses especially if that fire is the major hazard in the plantation areas and has caused tremendous damage, often year after year. Macleod (1971), a forest fire expert from Canada who was assigned to provide advice and recommendations to the Royal Forest Department (RFD) about the forest fire situation in Thailand in 1971 estimated that the annual forest area burned was about 18,772,000 hectares. These burned areas were mostly occurred in the North and Northeast.

Previous Recommendations

The RFD has recognized that forest fires have been seriously damaging the forest. Over the years, a large number of recommendations have been made for overcoming the fire problems. These suggestions were as follows:

Champion (1962) suggested that: "It is recognized that at present (1962) full protection is unattainable, but steps can be taken to reduce the damage done to the growing stock and the soil".

Krit (1966) when writing about forestry development in Thailand noted that: " Thoughts have been given to creation of fire-fighting units, construction of fire observation towers, and procurement of fire fighting equipment, but under the present (1966) circumstances, it will probably be somtime before such things materialize."

Rindt (1969) reported That: "Pine plantations represent a large investment of public funds as well as a valuable timber resource. A fire protection and fire suppression plan should be developed for the pine areas. Necessary fire-fighting equipment and instruments to measure fire weather should be obtained. The hill tribes and rural people who are the principal labour source in the pine areas, should be trained to fight forest fires."

Lane (1970) summarized the following recommendations for overcoming forest fire:
1) A forest officer should be appointed for full time work on forest fire control methods and receive training abroad.
2) Reduction of fire damage should be a major subject in public campaign.
3) Carried out to reduce fire damage by clearing fire lines, controlled burning, establishing fire stations, fire patrolling, and constructing look-out towers.
4) Burning of roadside vegetation should be prohibited in reserved forests.

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