Wildfire warning issued to landowners living in rural areas amid heatwave

Wildfire warning issued to landowners living in rural areas amid heatwave

A WARNING has been issued to landowners and the general public to refrain from any outdoor burning during the current heatwave.

With temperatures soaring, the wildfire warning has been issued to landowners following gorse fires in Ogonnelloe and Cratloe at the weekend.

Emergency services, including Limerick Fire Service, tackled a massive gorse fire on Woodcock Hill on Sunday.

Following the gorse fires, Clare County Fire and Rescue Service is asking landowners and the general public to refrain from any outdoor burning during the ongoing spell of hot weather.

After a scorcher of a weekend, peaking at 27 degrees in Limerick, temperatures could possibly exceed 30 degrees between Wednesday and Thursday of this week.

The Fire Service has warned that any outside burning can spread to private and State-owned forestry plantations and jeopardise the safety of dwellings and families living in rural areas.

Landowners are being reminded that Section 40 of the Wildlife Acts 1976 to 2012 prohibits the cutting, grubbing, burning or destruction of vegetation, with certain strict exemptions, from March 1 to August 31 during the nesting and breeding season for birds and wildlife. 

Adrian Kelly, Clare Chief Fire Officer says the Department of Agriculture has issued a ‘Condition Orange – High Fire Risk for Forest Fires’ while Met Éireann currently has a High-Temperature warning in place.

He added: “We would like to remind landowners that it is an offence under the Wildlife Act to burn growing vegetation between March 1 to August 31 in any year, on any land not then cultivated. The sad fact is that if this simple rule was adhered to, many costly and dangerous wildfires would be avoided.”