Wildfire warning issued to Clare landowners

Wildfire warning issued to Clare landowners

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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.

Met Éireann has issued a Status Yellow Alert for County Clare for tomorrow (Thursday, 27 June) when temperatures are forecast to reach 27c.

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 1 March to 31 August during the nesting and breeding season for birds and wildlife.

Adrian Kelly, Clare County Council Chief Fire Officer, commented, “We would like to remind landowners that it is an offence under the Wildlife Act to burn growing vegetation between 1 March and 31 August 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 that occur across Clare each year would be avoided.”

Photo: © Pat Flynn 2019

Advice to the General Public/Forest Visitors. Where fire outbreaks occur at or near recreational areas the following actions should be taken by visitors in the interests of safety.

  1. Do not light fires in and around forests or open land.
  2. Do not attempt to intervene or fight fires under any circumstances.
  3. Gather all family/group members and move to a safe fuel-free location such as a car park, upwind of the fire.
  4. Telephone Fire and Rescue Services via 112 and report the fire and its location.
  5. Evacuate if instructed to do so, and cooperate with all Emergency Service Instructions.

Details of the laws in relation to burning are available on the Clare County Council website, www.clarecoco.ie or the Department of Agriculture and Food website, www.agriculture.gov.ie.

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Chief Reporter Pat Flynn has worked as a journalist for almost 30 years. His career began during the late 1980s when, like many aspiring radio presenters of the time, he worked for local pirate radio stations in Clare and Limerick. Pat joined Clare FM in 1990 where he worked as researcher initially and later presented several different programmes including the station's flagship current affairs programme. He was also the station's News Editor and Deputy Controller of Programmes. Despite leaving in 2003 to pursue a career as a freelance journalist, he continues to work with the station to this day. As well as being the Clare Herald’s Chief Reporter Pat is also freelance journalist and broadcaster, contributing to Ireland’s national newspapers and is a regular contributor to national broadcasters.

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