Minister issues Fire Warning

A fire in Kilmaley, Clare, today.

Simon Coveney T.D., Minister for Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine today reminded forest owners, forestry managers, farmers, turf cutters and the public that there will be an ongoing risk of land and forest fires in many parts of the country over the coming days.

Minister Coveney noted that a number of wildfires had been reported over the Easter Weekend and that due to the dry and windy weather at the moment, ‘high’ to ‘extreme’ risk conditions for fire will persist until the coming weekend at least, according to Met Eireann’s Fire Weather Index (FWI).

The Minister said: “My Department’s Forest Service took the unusual step of notifying foresters, forestry companies and other stakeholders of the potential high risk fire conditions developing in recent days and I would like to reiterate that message to forest owners, farmers, turf cutters, members of the public and anyone working in or enjoying our countryside.

”We do not have information yet on the source of the wildfires reported over the Easter weekend, but the incidents demonstrate the danger of uncontrolled fires and show that the risks of damage to property and to the rural environment and the threat to peoples’ lives are very real. In addition, these incidents have a significant impact on the resources of our emergency services.”

The Minister reminded land owners and the public that it is illegal to burn growing vegetation on uncultivated land between 1st March and 31st August and asked all rural dwellers to be vigilant for fire, to report any suspicious activity to the Gardai and to report any uncontrolled or unattended fires to the Fire Service.