Terengganu fishermen head out to sea despite haze
Last Update: 16/09/2019
KUALA TERENGGANU, Sept 16 -- The fishermen in Terengganu are still going out to sea to catch fish despite the current hazy weather.
Kemasik Area Fishemen's Association chairman Abdul Ghani Ismail said that besides it being the primary source of income, they also had adequate safety equipment on board, and adhered to the directives of the authorities.
"Although the catch has been reduced by up to 50 per cent, the fishermen remained unfazed by the hazy weather, but we are constantly reminding them to prioritise safety at sea.
"I myself went out to sea after dawn today, although today the haze in Kemaman was a bit severe... what's important is to always be aware of the changes around us, and to make sure that our safety and communication equipment is in good condition before heading out to sea," he said when contacted by Bernama.
According to the Air Pollutant Index of Malaysia, two reading stations in Terengganu recorded unhealthy air quality as of noon, namely in Kemaman (135) and Paka (110).
An API reading of between 0 and 50 is categorised as good, 51 to 100 (moderate), 101 to 200 (unhealthy), 201 to 300 (very unhealthy) and above 300 (hazardous).
Abd Ghani, who went out to the sea with four other fishermen using a 30-foot fiber boat, only caught fish around five nautical miles away from the coast.
"However, there are still fishermen who are brave enough to go out to sea squid jigging using smaller fishing boats measuring 16 or 18 feet in these hazy conditions," he said.
Meanwhile, state Agriculture, Agro-based Industry and Rural Development Committee chairman Dr Azman Ibrahim said traditionally, in risky weather conditions, fishermen would make a decision on whether to head out to sea based on their capabilities.
"The fishermen are well aware of the risks they face if they continue to head out into the sea under certain weather conditions such as haze and stormy seas.
"I just hope they make sure that their Global Positioning System (GPS) and sonar system are working well before heading out to sea, and that they constantly keep in touch with other fishermen or family members while out there," he said.