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Fire Safety

Rare Condition Red forest fire warning issued as highs of 30 degrees forecast tomorrow

Temperatures are due to range between 24 to 30 degrees tomorrow, according to Met Éireann.

A CONDITION RED danger warning for forest fires has been issued by the Department of Agriculture in advance of further high temperatures this week.

Temperatures are due to range between 24 to 30 degrees tomorrow and conditions are forecast to remain warm throughout the week.

The Condition Red warning replaces an Orange High fire risk warning that has been in effect since last Thursday.

Condition Red is the highest level warning and is rare in Ireland. Under extreme fire risk conditions, any ignition may give rise to rapid and unpredictable wildfire development and spread, particularly in dead grass and low moisture shrub fuels like gorse and heather.

Fires at this time of the year can also have a devastating impact on wildlife and habitats, especially fledging birds and young mammals living in affected areas.

Fire prevention plans

The Department of Agriculture is recommending that forest owners act immediately to implement fire prevention plans, and to be prepared for the likelihood of fire outbreaks on or around their property.

The highest levels of vigilance and cooperation with neighbouring landowners are required at this point, the Department said.

It added that landowners and managers should ensure that the use of open fires, barbeques and other potential ignition sources does not take place on forest lands and other public areas during the current hot weather.

Similarly, the farming community is being asked to be particularly vigilant with regard to the use of machinery around hay meadows and to refrain from the use of fire on cultivated farmland.

Where the general public come into contact with fire outbreaks at or near recreational areas, the following actions should be taken by visitors in the interest of safety:

  • Do not cause or light fires in and around open land.
  • Dispose of smoking materials responsibly.
  • 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. Cooperate with all emergency service instructions.

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