The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine (DAFM) have issued a condition orange fire warning, effective from Wednesday May 20th until Friday May 22nd.
The increased risk of fire has arisen from increased temperatures and low recent rainfall levels.
A high fire risk is deemed to exist in all areas where hazardous fuels such as dead grasses and shrub fuels such as heather and gorse exist, according to the DAFM.
They stated that recent incidents suggest that most fires occur from deliberate ignitions on public recreational lands and forest sites.
Fire behaviour is likely to be influenced by high wind speeds ahead of any rain fronts associated with storm ‘Arthur’ later in the week.
The Department has advised all forest owners to prepare for possible outbreaks of fire. They say fire line, fire plans and fire suppression equipment should be reviewed and made accessible in the event of a fire breaking out.
“The need for increased vigilance at this time cannot be overstated.”
Fire mitigation measures have also been advised to help prevent loss or damage to forest resources through the event of a fire outbreak.
Advice to the general public/forest visitors:
The DAFM have asked members of the general public to cooperate with requests regarding fire safety and obey the laws. They are also being urged to be considerate of emergency vehicles when parking.
The Department has issued the following advice:
- Do not light fires in and around forests or open land;
- Do not attempt to intervene or fight fires under any circumstances;
- Gather all family/group members and move to a safe fuel-free location such as a car park, upwind of the fire;
- Telephone Fire and Rescue Services via 112 and report the fire and its location;
- Evacuate if instructed to do so and cooperate with all Emergency Service Instructions.