Wednesday 23 October 2019

Firefighters battle gorse blaze after Orange wildfire warning

Crews from Ennis fight a gorse fire near Ruan, Co Clare. Photo: Press 22
Crews from Ennis fight a gorse fire near Ruan, Co Clare. Photo: Press 22

Allison Bray and Pat Flynn

Fire crews battled 20-foot-high flames from a gorse fire as a Status Orange fire-risk warning for the rest of the week was announced.

Crews from the Co Clare Fire and Rescue Service battled a gorse fire near Ruan yesterday where flames shot 20 feet in the air in the remote area.

The blaze broke out just hours after its fire chief warned of the risk associated with low humidity, lack of rain and current dry conditions.

A suspected electrical fault from a machine also sparked a fire in a forested area near Sixmilebridge in the county that could have sparked a massive forest fire.

Fortunately fire crews were able to prevent it from spreading.

The fire chief's warning came the same day as the Department of Agriculture issued a 'high risk' warning yesterday for gorse fires until noon on Friday for all areas where gorse, heather, dried grass and vegetation exist.

The warning comes as Met Éireann said largely dry and warm conditions - with daytime highs hovering around 20C - will prevail nationwide until Friday.

Meanwhile, Irish Water is advising all users to conserve water to avoid a repeat of last summer's hose pipe ban due to dwindling supplies reservoirs due to the prolonged drought.

While the State water body is not currently concerned about reservoir levels to date, a spokeswoman said consumers were being reminded to conserve as much water as possible.

"At the moment, there aren't any areas where we are concerned about levels," she said.

Irish Independent

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