The Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan TD, has condemned those who started a gorse fire in Killarney.
She is of the opinion that the actions were “reckless and irresponsible” and has promised that “the full rigour of the law will apply.”
The fire was started in Killarney National Park on Sunday (March 29th), as reported by us here. 150-acres of natural habitat was destroyed as a result of this action and two fire units were needed to get the blaze under control.
‘Despicable and heinous crime’
Minister Madigan commented on the incident, saying: “This is a despicable and heinous crime at the best of times but more especially now. It is a malign act which has diverted emergency services at this critical time in our country. It is illegal to burn land at this moment and those that do face penalties. It is now prime season for nesting birds, breeding mammals & regeneration of growth & habitats after the winter.”
“The cause of the fire is still under investigation and the NPWS will be following up with the Garda authorities and Kerry Fire Services to ascertain the circumstances surrounding the blaze.”
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank both the Kerry Fire Service and the National Parks and Wildlife Service staff of my Department in Killarney, who worked tirelessly through the night to quench the fire in the Dinis region of the park.”
“I would also appeal to everyone to be conscious of the danger posed by fire – any fire – but particularly on open ground which can very quickly spread out of control. We have all seen how homes and lives can be threatened and we can also see the damage to the landscape and to valuable habitats caused by illegal and uncontrolled fires,” she concluded.