Following weekend gorse fires in Doonbeg and Kilmaley, Tom Hayes, Minister with responsibility for Forestry, today reminded forest owners and managers, farmers and members of the public of the need to be alert to the continued risk of wildfires.
Minister Hayes said “In recent years we have experienced a number of major wildfires that destroyed or damaged property, including farmland and forests. These events endanger people’s homes, place enormous strain on the resources of the emergency services and put the lives of rural dwellers and emergency service personnel at considerable risk.”
The Minister noted that following dry weather patterns, a wildfire risk can quickly develop in all areas where flammable vegetation such as grasses, gorse and heather are present, especially in proximity to forests and other assets.
The Minister asked land owners, rural dwellers and other land users to maintain a high degree of vigilance regarding fire over the coming months. Suspicious activity should be reported to the Gardai and uncontrolled or unattended fires should be reported immediately to the Fire and Emergency Services.
Over the past 24 hours, separate gorse fires were reported at Letteragh and Booltiagh in Kilmaley as well as near Doonbeg. They were quickly brought under control by Clare County Fire and Rescue Service.