A Condition Red, High-risk forest fire warning was issued by the Department of Agriculture at the beginning of the week, urging the public to stay vigilant and be wary of potential gorse/forest fires breaking out, as reported by us here.
In recent days many pictures and videos have surfaced of wildfires taking over parts all over the country. Parts of Dublin and the Wicklow mountains were affected, with one family’s car even catching fire during one incident.
A helicopter was deployed to Trim in Co. Meath yesterday, after two separate fires broke out in the heatwave, one in Kildalkley and another in Boardsmill. The Fire service attended the scene, while Coillte deployed a helicopter to attend one of the fires. Firefighters in Limerick also battled a blaze near Anglesboro, with three units from Kilmallock Fire station in action and fire workers from Cork and Tipperary called into help.
Further fires have been reported across the country, though some were not accidental, such as the one in the above video footage. The footage, via Kevin McCloskey, was taken of Glenshane Pass in County Derry and it is thought to have been started intentionally by a member of the public.
The fire was first reported on Wednesday morning at approximately 5am and firefighters have been battling the blaze ever since, with one fire engine attending the scene overnight, Thursday, June 28th. The fire spread over 1.5kms in total, destroying all wildlife in its path.
Picture Below shows firefighters battling the fire - NI Aerial Vision.
The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine have issued a number of safety tips to farmers to go with the Condition Red Forest Fire Alert-
• They recommend that any forest owners immediately implement fire prevention plans, and be prepared for the likelihood of fire outbreaks on or around their property.
• Landowners and managers should ensure that the use of open fires, barbeques and other potential ignition sources does not take place in forest lands and other public areas during the current heatwave period.
• They have urged the public to stay vigilant with regard to the use of machinery around hay meadows and refrain from the use of fire on cultivated farmland
Other Safety Messages for anyone coming in contact with fires-
• Do not cause or light fires in and around forests or open land.
• Dispose of smoking materials responsibly.
• Do not attempt to intervene or fight fires under any circumstances.
• Gather all family/group members and move to a safe fuel-free location such as a car park, upwind of the fire.
• Telephone Fire and Rescue Services via 112 and report the fire and its location.
• Evacuate if instructed to do so. Co-operate with all Emergency Service Instructions.