Chongqing residents unite to vanquish wildfires

By TAN YINGZI and DENG RUI in Chongqing | China Daily | Updated: 2022-08-29 07:11
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Volunteers carry supplies up Jinyun Mountain on Thursday to help quell the fire in the Beibei district of Chongqing. LI YE/FOR CHINA DAILY

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Jinyun Mountain is one of the most popular outdoor areas for Chongqing residents. Located in Wentang Gorge alongside the Jialing River and known for its rosy clouds, the mountain forms a natural barrier with the urban area. In ancient times, it was known as Mount Ba.

The mountain's beautiful scenery has attracted numerous poets and its name has often appeared in their work.

With 96.6 percent forest coverage, the Jinyun Mountain Natural Reserve has a rich diversity of species. It boasts a well-preserved subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest landscape and a relatively stable ecosystem.

The wildfire that broke out in Jinyun on Aug 21 posed a threat to everyone in Chongqing.

Chen Yiyong, who runs a wood carving factory in Beibei, is experienced in using chain saws. He immediately signed up to fell trees after receiving a recruitment notice from the local government. Chen and two workers, who are all in their 40s, collected chain saws and headed to the mountain.

"Beibei is my home area and I must protect it," he said.

Motorcycles took the trio halfway up the mountain, before they climbed for nearly two hours to reach the work site. Their clothes were soaked in sweat.

Chen said: "The fire was getting close, but we were so anxious that we forgot just how tired we were-and also about the heat. We just kept felling trees and tried our best to help build man-made barriers."

Much to their surprise, they were offered cold drinks and even ice cream as well as prompt medical attention on the mountain, thanks to the efforts of volunteers.

"We had nothing to worry about, and more than enough supplies," Chen said.

He added that although the volunteers went to the scene individually, they followed guidance from the rescue headquarters.

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