NPWS makes public appeal over high fire risk

Galway Daily news NPWS makes public appeal of high fire risk

The National Parks and Wildlife Service is appealing for people to be extremely cautious of the risk posed by fires during this heatwave.

The NPWS has issued a reminder that it is to light any fire likely to cause vegetation to burn within 1.6km of a nature reserve, and that barbeques are strictly forbidden.

Vehicles must not be parked at site entrances or impede emergency vehicle access, and may be towed away if causing an obstruction.

Minister of State Malcolm Noonan said “The message is simple – be careful. Don’t light fires or barbecues, keep access roads clear for emergency services, and if you’re camping, let someone know where you’ll be.”

“There is a high risk of fire right now. Be vigilant and keep yourself and the wild places we all love safe.”

A status yellow weather warning for high temperatures for Galway and all of Ireland will be in effect from midday Friday until Sunday morning.

The Department of Agriculture has also issued a status orange Forest Fire Warning until next Tuesday due to the hot and dry conditions.

Fires are particularly destructive in spring and summer as it is prime season for nesting birds, breeding mammals and the regeneration of growth.

In order to reduce the incidence of wildfires, Conservation Rangers and other NPWS staff will be monitoring and patrolling the network of sites over the coming days and remain in close liaison with the Gardaí and the Fire Service.

The NPWS will provide aerial surveillance, involving NPWS staff monitoring from helicopters, at some of the National Parks in the coming days.